Fédération Internationale des Corps et Associations Consulaires – “FICAC”, also known as the World Federation of Consuls, was founded in Copenhagen on 2 October 1982 by a small group of visionaries led by Consul General Vagn Jespersen of Denmark. This body gave Consuls of the world a much-needed forum to share experiences and coordinate efforts to enhance their status and effectiveness and to bring together Consular Associations and Corps from all around the globe. FICAC is an International Non-Profit Association (AISBL) established in Belgium by a Royal Decree. Agreements have also been signed with more than 20 Universities around the world to collaborate in the fields of diplomacy and peace and conflict resolution studies.
FICAC has spread widely and rapidly: since 1982, 97 associations have joined FICAC. It has been organising periodic conferences to strengthen links between Honorary Consuls and channel their expertise into professional areas. The World Federation of Consuls has United Nations recognition as an NGO (1993) with SPECIAL ECOSOC Status (since August 2018). It is also recognised as an NGO by the Organisation of American States (OAS) and has a collaboration with the European Union.
On 17th September 2010, the World Federation of Consuls signed a partnership agreement with the Prince Albert II Foundation of Monaco, a Foundation created by His Serene Highness Prince Albert II, to work in the fields of environment and climate change. Several MoUs were also signed with international organisations such as ASCAME - Association of the Mediterranean Chambers of Commerce -, RASIT - The Royal Academy of Science International Trust -, INTERLEGAL - Global Legal Network -, PAM – Parliamentary Union of the Mediterranean et al. A minimum of 2 Regional Conferences are organised every year and the World Congress of Consuls, during which the General Assembly elects the President, Vice-President and 9 Board Members, is held every three years.
FICAC is now truly a global network of Consular Corps and Associations, serving to support and improve the status, legitimacy and effectiveness of all Consular Corps in all sending and receiving States. Its motto is: “BRIDGING THE WORLD”.
The highest distinction of the World Federation of Consuls, the FICAC Gold Star, is awarded to incumbent Heads of State. Among the recipients are:
The Most Honourable P.J. Patterson, Governor General of Jamaica
H.E. Abdullah Gul, President of the Republic of Turkey
H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco
H.E. John Kufuor, President of Ghana
H.E. Herman van Rompuy, President of European Council
H.E. Benigno Simeon Aquino III, President of the Philippines
H.H. Pope Benedict XVI
H.E. Tomislav Nikolic, President of the Republic of Serbia
H.A.H. Bartholomew, Archbishop of Constantinople, New Rome and Ecumenical Patriarch
H.E. Danilo Medina Sanchez, President of the Dominican Republic
H.E. Borut Pahor, President of the Republic of Slovenia
H.E. Rt. Hon’ble President Ms. Bidhya Devi Bhandari, President of the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal
H.H. Pope Francis
H.E. Nicos Anastasiades, President of Cyprus
H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo – Addo, President of Ghana
H.E. Iris Xiomara Castro Sarmiento, President of the Republic of Honduras