Relations with non-European states on all continents allow the Council of Europe to widen its scope for action and global outreach.

At their 4th Summit held in Reykjavik on 16-17 May 2023, Heads of State and Government of the Council of Europe committed to strengthening the role of the Council of Europe in the European multilateral architecture and in global governance by enhancing its external dimension, through, inter alia, a new engagement based on its core values with democracies in the world and its southern neighbourhood”.

At present, more than 100 non-European states are Parties to Council of Europe treaties or participants in other Council of Europe instruments and bodies, such as the Venice Commission, GRECO, the Pompidou Group or the European Centre for Global Interdependence and Solidarity (North-South Centre).

A number of non-European states also have institutionalised bilateral relations with the Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers, Parliamentary Assembly and/or Congress.

Observer status is the only available status open, at Committee of Ministers’ level, for non-European states. Relations and contacts with observer states show that they cover almost the whole spectrum of the Council of Europe’s activities.

Relations with beneficiaries of the Policy towards neighbouring regions have also been formalised to a certain extent, and aimed at developing a common legal space based on Council of Europe’s values and instruments.