Photo from the 1971 CHOGM in Singapore
You may have heard that there’s a ‘CHOGM’ taking place in Perth, Western Australia this week (28th to 30th October 2011), you may also know that HM The Queen is in Australia and that some Heads of Government are meeting for a conference, but do you know what CHOGM actually is? Or even what the acronym stands for?
CHOGM stands for Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting. It’s a biennial meeting where Commonwealth Heads of Government meet to discuss global and Commonwealth issues and agree on collective policies and initiatives. Every two years the conference is hosted by a different member state whose respective Prime Minister of President chairs the meeting.
There are 54 member states in the Commonwealth (formally known as the Commonwealth of Nations) and the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting gives the leaders of these nations an opportunity to come together.
Meetings of Commonwealth leaders had been held in various different guises before, but the first official CHOGM was held in Singapore in 1971. This was the first time that the name ‘Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting’ had been used to reflect the diversity of the governing structures in the Commonwealth.
Another change occurred when it was decided that each meeting should have an official theme, beginning at the 1997 Edinburgh CHOGM. Since then each CHOGM has had a theme which is set by the host nation.
The 2011 CHOGM is being held in Perth, Western Australia from the 28th-30th October. Its theme is ‘Building National Resilience, Building Global Resilience’. The meeting will be opened by The Queen at the formal Opening Ceremony on Friday, followed by a Reception hosted by the Secretary-General.
To find out more about CHOGM you can visit the Commonwealth Secretariat website.
To discover photos of CHOGMs past and present visit the Jubilee Time Capsule website.