In April 2018, for the first time in over twenty years, the leaders of the Commonwealth’s 52 member countries will gather in the UK for their biennial summit.
The official meeting will take place at Buckingham Palace, with the Leaders’ Retreat hosted at Windsor Castle, and many will want to mark the Queen’s extraordinary tenure as Head of the Commonwealth.
Among the issues likely to be discussed are trade and prosperity (in a post-Brexit world); human rights, democracy, and good governance; small states, resilience and climate change; security, terrorism and common values; and the renewal of the Commonwealth, particularly through its young people. There are also to be forums for business, civil society, women, and youth, and many cultural and ancillary events. The XXI Commonwealth Games, in Gold Coast, Australia, will have ended a few days prior to the opening of the London summit.
The Round Table: the Commonwealth Journal of International Affairs, together with the Royal Over-Seas League, the Commonwealth Association, the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (International) and other Commonwealth partners, has organised a two-day conference focusing on the aims and likely outcomes of the summit.
Delegates will hear of the UK government’s plans and of other Commonwealth events taking place around the summit and will have an opportunity put forward their own ideas of what should be the Commonwealth’s policy priorities and plans for the future.
The Round Table has been exploring the challenges facing the Commonwealth over the years.
Below are some of the articles looking at the post-Malta CHOGM challenges and opportunities for the Commonwealth from its November 2015 Summit to the issues ahead of its London leaders’ conference in 2018.
“Was Malta, therefore, the turning point for the Commonwealth for which many had hoped? The job is far from done – but at least there is optimism that the Commonwealth is back on the right path” – Stuart Mole’s final Malta Notebook
The Commonwealth’s New Beginnings – Former Maltese Foreign Minister Michael Frendo addresses a Round Table conference in Malta in November 2015
The Commonwealth, The European Union, The Challenges – Former Prime Minister of Malta Dr Lawrence Gonzi delivers The Round Table Lecture – November, 2015
The Commonwealth After Malta – The Round Table hosts a conference looking at the future of the Commonwealth – January 2016
The House of Lords debates the Commonwealth and the UK’s role in hosting CHOGM 2018
Empire 2.0? Brexit, the UK and Commonwealth trade – Commonwealth Update – March 2017
After Brexit: Securing ACP interests – Conference hosted by The Ramphal Institute
Special edition of the Round Table Journal – Brexit and the Commonwealth: What Next?