THE next round of trade talks between developing countries and the European Union on new Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs), might be more open to concerns raised by African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) nations so that a more favourable deal might be reached by the end of the year, a top official of the Trade and Industry Ministry said yesterday.
Southern African non-governmental organisations have put forward demands to their governments in resistance to the continuing talks on economic partnership agreements (EPAs) between the European Union and the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) states.
On July 16thJoyandet, Junior Minister in charge of Cooperation, answered questions to the media Europolitique. The questions were initially on EU plans to tackle the food crisis (mainly on the use of the billion euro taken from CAP subsidies) but the journalist made a link with EPA negotiations. Below some highlights:
“France would like to push for a “food exception” at the international level.”
Transnational corporations could be granted unfettered access to Kenya’s banking and telecommunications sectors if trade talks taking place in Antananarivo, Madagascar, favour Europe.
If the envisaged reciprocal Europe-ACP economic system reaches an unrestrained agreement on services, a firm may just enter Nairobi and lawfully demand an operation licence. It may not matter what impact that could have on established businesses and national interests.
The European Commission has welcomed the adoption by EU Member States of a new Regulation applying the EC's Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) for the period from 1 January 2009 until the end of 2011.
Brussels is tempted to skip the translation of the interim economic partnership agreements (EPAs) into the 23 official European languages because of concerns that some African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries may change their minds about signing the final agreements. An internal European Commission document dated July 17, 2008, seen by IPS, reveals that "translating and legally verifying the languages of the interim EPAs that were initialled last year is proving more burdensome and time-consuming than originally foreseen.
Meetings of the Bureau and the Standing Committees
ESF and the EPA Campaign
Stop EPAs Campaign events
Partnership for Change project has two thematic focus connected to the heart of development policies and the struggle against poverty. MDGs and EPAs, central themes of the project, were indeed both created as development policies: the first one, with the aim of committing governments in the South and in the North on punctual development objectives to be reached by 2015, the second one, proposing economic agreements of free trade as an access point to development for many ACP countries.
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