This page gives information on the discussions on ‘Trade and regional integration’ in the first phase of the public consultation (February-May, 2007).
Basis for discussion
An issue paper drafted by the ECDPM and approved by the EU and the AU was presented on the website and participants were encouraged to respond to questions raised in it. After some time another discussion paper was drafted, based on issues raised in the consultation as well as in the official negotiations. The consultation also made space for participants to raise other questions, priorities, or challenges that they would like to put on the agenda.
The main messages
The main messages from the actors participating in the first phase of the consultation were the following:
- Very strong recommendations on EPAs, with a reference to the on-going campaigns such as the ‘Stop EPA’ campaign, have been voiced: to integrate safeguard mechanisms into the EPAs and other trade agreements , to grant the developing countries preferential treatment, to omit Singapore issues, to extend the timeframe for the EPA negotiations, to respond positively to the requests of ACP countries
- The increased competitiveness and productivity of African agriculture needs to be supported and the EU should modify its agricultural policy in a more development oriented manner.
- Supply side constraints should be further addressed, notably regarding infrastructure, and public-private partnerships enhanced
- Private sector could be more structurally associate to policy formulation and implementation
- Africa’s own integration process, i.e. the Abuja Treaty (AEC), should be supported.
See the report of the internet consultation for more information on the issues raised.
The contributions made
Comments could be made directly on the websites and contributions could also be sent in the form of position papers.
Position papers received focusing on Trade and regional integration can be viewed here.