Update on the epa negotiations
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UPDATE ON THE EPA NEGOTIATIONS. CUTS/WTO Regional Outreach Workshop Nairobi. By: Ambassador Nathan Irumba SEATINI (Uganda ). Structure of presentation. Introduction The Interim FEPA Rendezvous Clause Outstanding Market access issues Substantive negotiations Challenges. Introduction .

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Update on the epa negotiations


CUTS/WTO Regional Outreach Workshop


By: Ambassador Nathan Irumba

SEATINI (Uganda )

Structure of presentation

Structure of presentation

  • Introduction

  • The Interim FEPA

  • Rendezvous Clause

  • Outstanding Market access issues

  • Substantive negotiations

  • Challenges



  • What are EPAs?

    • New reciprocal trade arrangements between the EC & ACP

  • Negotiations started in Sept. 2002 , were slated to be completed by December 2007

  • Negotiations not completed

Interim epa

Interim EPA

  • Why an interim EPA?

    • To avoid to any disruption in trade.

  • Major pillars

    • Trade Regime for Goods /market access

      • EC offer –Duty Free& Quota free market access ( apart from rice & sugar)

The eac market access

The EAC market access

  • Commitment to gradually open its market to goods from the EU over a period of 25 years in three phases.

    • 1st phase (2008-2010), 64%.

    • 2nd phase (2015-2023)16% ,

    • 3rd 2020-2033, the EAC 2%

      • Total of 82%

    • Exclusion of 18%

On going negotiations

On-going negotiations

  • Outstanding market access issues :

    • Negotiations are still ongoing on the following issues

      • Art 13 (Standstill Clause) - the parties agree not to increase their applied customs duties their mutual trade .

      • Art. 16 Most Favoured Nation (MFN)

        Any preferences EAC gives would be automatically extended to EC.

Update on the epa negotiations


  • Export taxes- (Article 15)- Prohibits export taxes on exports yet these are essential for value addition at national level.

  • Safeguards (Article 20&21):

    • These are measures which can be taken by a country if a sector of a domestic industry of that country suffers injury.

On going negotiations1

On-going negotiations

  • Substantive issues-Rendezvous Clause:

  • Customs and trade facilitation;

  • Outstanding trade and market access issues, including rules of origin;

  • Technical barriers to trade and sanitary and phyto-sanitary measures;

  • Trade in services;

Update on the epa negotiations


  • Trade related issues, (competition policy, investment and private sector development, trade, environment and sustainable development, intellectual property rights, and transparency in public procurement);

  • Agriculture;

  • An elaborate dispute settlement mechanism and institutional arrangements;

  • Economic and development cooperation; and

  • Any other areas that the parties find necessary.

Ongoing negotiations

Ongoing negotiations

  • Customs and Trade facilitation

    • To ensure the smooth flow of goods & services

    • EAC interested in cooperation

  • Sanitary and Phyto-sanitary measures.

    • Border control measures to protect human, animal or plant life & health

    • Measures should not be barriers to trade

    • Negotiations are about addressing the methods of putting the measures in place & capacity building to meet the standards

Update on the epa negotiations


  • Technical Barriers to Trade( TBT):

    • These are technical regulations or standards imposed by governments on imports i.e labelling, packaging requirements..

    • Negotiations are about reducing possibilities of using TBTs as barriers to trade.

Economic development and cooperation

Economic Development and Cooperation

  • Uganda’s priority areas are: Transport infrastructure, Energy, Private Sector development, Information and Communication technology, industrial development and agriculture.

  • At EAC level -economic , social and environmental sustainability be included

  • EC,-these issues are already taken care of in the Cotonou agreement.

  • EAC to develop a text on Development cooperation Strategy & a Development matrix

  • EC reluctant to commit on additional funds.

Update on the epa negotiations


  • Trade in Services:

    • The EC interests: computer, postal and courier, telecommunications, financial, e-commerce and maritime transport.

    • EAC interests- supply of service through the presence of natural persons. The range of services includes professional services i.e legal, architecture, telecommunication, postal services, tourism …

    • Issues to note-lack of regulatory frameworks; Services include welfare sectors

Trade related areas

Trade related areas

  • These areas include; Competition policy, Intellectual Property and Transparency in government procurement.

  • The EC is interested in negotiating binding rules

  • The EAC is interested more in cooperation to be able to put in place laws and appropriate regulatory frameworks.

  • Competition policy –Kenya & Tanzania have national legislation, a regional competition law has just been adopted



  • Limited time –Conclusion of a comprehensive EPA by July 2009

  • Limited financial & Human resources

  • Overlapping membership –Tanzania in SADC , the others in COMESA

  • Balancing LDC & non-LDC interest ( Kenya the only Non-LDC)

  • Inclusiveness of stakeholders.

Update on the epa negotiations



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