Economic Partnership Agreements: A new approach to ACP-EU economic and trade cooperation - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Economic Partnership Agreements: A new approach to ACP-EU economic and trade cooperation

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  1. Economic Partnership Agreements: A new approach to ACP-EU economic and trade cooperation Claude Maerten, European Commission Head of Unit TRADE C 2 (claude.maerten@cec.eu.int) TRALAC’s Annual International Trade Law Conference 11 November 2004

  2. All-ACP phase (Oct. 2002- Oct. 2003) • convergence • Instruments for development • Support regional integration • Maintain and improve current level of market access • WTO compatibility - with SDT to be provided for all ACPs, in particular LDCs and vulnerable small, landlocked and island countries • divergence • Level of discussion of certain issues (all-ACP vs regional) • Sequencing negotiations and aid • Need for additional funding over and above the EDF

  3. Regions • Central Africa – CEMAC + Sao Tomé Brazzaville, 4th October • West Africa – ECOWAS + Mauritania Cotonou, 6th October • Southern and Eastern Africa – 16 Countries Mauritius, 7th February 2004 • Caribbean – Kingston (Jamaica), 16 April 2004 • SADC EPA - 7 SADC States Windhoek, 8 July 2004 • Pacific - ACP members of Pacific Forum 10 September 2004

  4. Road map: broad consensus on calendar • Introductory «priority setting» phase (3 months) • Convergence on strategic approach (until + mid 2005) Understanding on regional integration policies and priorities and on level of integration to be achieved when EPA implementation starts • Structuring and consolidation (until + mid 2006) : • Remaining trade related issues to be included in EPA • Prepare liberalisation scenarios • draft outline of EPA • Finalisation of negotiations (until end of 2007) • Negotiation of market access • Finalisation of EPA

  5. Challenges • Geographical configuration: ESA – EAC - SADC • South-South vs North-South focus • Capacity constraints • Time • Implementation • Link to development cooperation

  6. Conclusion • EPA is a process • Phase of regional negotiations • Phase of implementation (built in agenda)