When Did Economic Partnership Agreement Begin

The overall goal of EPAs is to contribute, through trade, to sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction in ACP countries. Negotiations on economic partnership agreements can take years to conclude. The agreements address a detailed set of issues that all need to be balanced in order to bring benefits to all parties. An agreement may be less difficult to reach between nations with a strong history of trade and cooperation, as was the case with the economic partnership agreements signed in 2007 by the European Union and the Asia-Caribbean and Pacific group. The Economic Partnership Agreements are a system for creating a free trade area between the European Union and the Group of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (ACP). This is a response to persistent criticism that the EU`s proposed non-reciprocal and discriminatory preferential trade agreements are incompatible with WTO rules. The EPAs date back to the signing of the Cotonou Agreement. EPAs with different regions are in different playing conditions. In 2016, the EPAs were to be signed with three regional economic communities in Africa (East African Community, Economic Community of West African States and Southern African Development Community), but these faced challenges. [1] [it should be updated] Proponents of economic partnership agreements say that the agreement will benefit all parties in the same way in the long run. By removing barriers to trade and people, each economy in the agreement can take advantage of the other benefits of the market. In addition to economic ties, economic partnerships can strengthen political relations and provide strong allies in times of political upheaval or military action. The EPAs will therefore take specific steps for this specific group.

Unlike other ACP countries, the smaller group is invited to reject EPAs and continue trade relations under the “Everything but Arms” (EBA) regulation. Launched in 2001 by the Council of Ministers, this change to the EC`s system of generalised preferences has since regulated trade relations between the EU and LDCs that have chosen to use this facility and allows all LDC products duty-free access to all LDC products, without any quantitative restrictions, except arms and ammunition. This provision, while facilitating the situation of LDCs under the new trading system, has also been criticised because the EBA initiative prevents LDCs from opening their markets to EU products under an EPA. Another weakness of the EBA initiative is that it uses the GSP`s rules of origin, which require a two-step transformation for textiles and clothing. On the other hand, the rules of origin of EPAs allow for a one-stage transformation of exports of these sectors. This is one of the reasons why Mozambique and Lesotho (both LDCs) signed the SADC INTERIMs EPA in November 2007 and signed in July 2009. Angola (which is not the least witnessed in the configuration of the CDAA EPA) has decided to continue its trade under the EBA, as its main exports to the EU are oil and diamonds, which can enter duty-free and quota-free as “fully preserved” origin products in accordance with the EBA`s rules of origin. EPAs with sub-Saharan Africa and other EU free trade agreements with North African countries are building blocks of the Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and the long-term prospect of a free trade agreement between continental countries. The EPAs already contain useful trade instruments for the construction of the AfCFTA. They provide a strong framework for regional trade and investment between THE EPA partners themselves and with the EU.

WordPress Themes