Raw Materials Working Group News July 2013

  1. EPAs: Kenya close to sign trade pacts with EU

Kenya is closer to signing Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) with the European Union (EU) that will enable more products from Europe to enter the local market.  One of the last points of disagreement is the existing trade pact between South Africa and the EU which could affect trade with Europe. Kenya imports more and more raw materials from South Africa and fears that EU would increase taxes on the goods partly manufactured with those raw materials.

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  1. Africa slow down EPAs negotiations 

African regions should refrain from signing the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) with the EU until the next Africa-EU Summit in April 2014. It was the decision reached during an EPA Negotiations Coordination Meeting organized by the African Union (AU). They considered that an assessment of impact on the Eastern African Community (EAC) should be then carried out. Certain divergent areas need more in-depth analysis and discussion, according to the AU. These are: the most favoured nation clause, the agricultural subsidies in the EU, development finance for the EPAs, and the rules of origin.

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  1. EPA threat Central Africa Economic Community Regional Integration 

The representatives of the Central Africa Economic Community have stated recently that Economic Partnership Agreements (APE) are a threat for the regional integration process in Central Africa. The persistence of the European Union to distinguish treatment between the least developed countries and middle-income countries is not to facilitate the negotiations. The key issues for the negotiations are the market access, the loss for customs revenues, the taxes and export subsidies, community contributions and the breach of the contract clauses.

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