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Ibero-American Summits

The Ibero-American Summits came into being in Guadalajara and Madrid, where their Founding Summits were held in 1991 and 1992, respectively, in response to the political will of the 21 member countries (22, following the incorporation of Andorra) to formalise the historic link between Ibero-America and the Iberian Peninsula through dialogue, cooperation and solidarity. Over the years, this mechanism has established itself as one of the privileged spaces in the region, with a positive agenda and tangible effects for citizens through Ibero-American cooperation programmes.

Spain promoted the initiative to hold the Ibero-American Summits a few years before hosting the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona, the Universal Exposition in Seville and Madrid as Cultural Capital of Europe. These events coincided with the V Centenary of the Discovery of America.

The Summit of Heads of State and Government is the highest level of the Ibero-American Conference, which is underpinned by the agreements reached during the meetings of the Foreign Ministers, the Networks of National Coordinators and Cooperation Officers, as well as the sectoral ministerial meetings in the Ibero-American sphere. It has been held every two years since 2014 and the Heads of State and Government of the 22 member countries are invited to participate. Twelve countries hold Associate Observer status and 18 international organisations hold Consultative Observer status. Education, health, culture, employment, integration and immigration have been on the agendas of all the Ibero-American Summits, which have not forgotten political issues such as disarmament, terrorism, globalisation and the strengthening of democracies.​

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, José Manuel Albares, together with Andrés Allamand on the day of his appointment as the new SEGIB during the Summit of Ibero-American Foreign Affairs Ministers, held in Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic) in November 2021.

The Ibero-American General Secretariat (SEGIB) was created in 2003 at the Santa Cruz de la Sierra Summit (Bolivia) and it began its work in 2005 at the Salamanca Summit (Spain). Since then, it has programmed and coordinated the preparatory work for the Summits and has served as a liaison between the 22 governments that make up the Ibero-American Community of Nations.

Enrique Iglesias, the first Ibero-American Secretary-General, held the post from 2005 to 2014. In February 2014, the Ibero-American foreign ministers appointed Rebeca Grynspan as the new Secretary General and in 2022 she was succeeded by Andrés Allamand. In addition to its headquarters in Madrid, the Ibero-American General Secretariat has three sub-regional offices in Ibero-American countries: in Mexico City, Montevideo and Lima.

SEGIB’s main objectives are to strengthen the Ibero-American Community and ensure its international presence, promote historical, cultural, social and economic ties between Ibero-American countries, support the preparation of Ibero-American Summits of Heads of State and Government and fulfil their mandates, implement South-South cooperation in the region in the priority areas of education, culture and social cohesion, and promote the international projection of the Ibero-American Conference.


​Related documentation

Ibero-American General Secretariat (SEGIB)It opens in new window

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