Commonwealth consultation is a continuous process, taking place at many levels.
There are regular Commonwealth finance, health, law, education, environment, women’s affairs and youth Ministerial meetings. Senior Officials meet in the year between Commonwealth summits or CHOGMs. CHOGMs are the pinnacle events in any Commonwealth calendar and take place every two years in a different country. CHOGMs bring together almost one third of the world’s leaders, mostly Prime Ministers and Presidents. A CHOGM is arguably the only international forum where such a diverse group of countries come together to adopt common positions through consensus. The theme of the next CHOGM, due to take place from 5 to 8 December 2003 in Abuja, Nigeria, will be 'Development and Democracy: Partnerships for Peace and Prosperity'.
The Meeting of the Committee of the Whole (senior officials) usually takes place six weeks preceding CHOGM in London. Meetings in the margins of a CHOGM include the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) and the Ministerial Group on Small States. Parallel events involving non-government organisations, business and youth also take place.