Articles from other organizations on the issues AEFJN works at.

1605 EU African EPAs in Limbo

The EPAs are both harmful to regional integration efforts as well as to promoting transformation of raw materials in Africa. Concerning processing of raw materials, the EPAs reduce the possibility of applying export taxes on raw materials for African countries. Such export taxes would allow African upstream producers to benefit from low prices as well as creating opportunities for more processing and transformation of raw materials in Africa, which would lead to more and higher-value exports.  The fact that the EU negotiates the EPAs in regional blocs hinders African regional integration efforts because these various negotiations will lead to different results and hence maintain fragmented trade between African regions.  This would also hamper intra-regional trade policies and plans for a continental trading bloc in Africa. 


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Dangers of WTO 10th Ministerial Conference: New Round + TTIP + TPP + EPA

tl_files/aefjn-images/im_epas/im_csr/Danger of WTO.jpgThere is much talk these days about TTIP, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. Africans know very little about TTIP. They have however, suffered a lot under EPAs (Economic Partnership Agreements) for the last nearly thirty years, but few in Europe know about this. Why do people in Europe not know or care to know about EPAs? What is all this hoo-ha about TTIP, and why is it important for Africans to know about it?



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EPAs Falls Apart in East Africa

The EU has given the world the impression that the magic formula for the development and integration of Africa into the main stream of the world economy lies in the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs). However, there is evidence that the so-called trade pact is more of a hindrance than a help to regional integration and, consequently, to the development of Africa. The AEFJN has maintained that the EPAs are tools in the hands of the EU to plunder the resources of Africa. But what is most painful is the way the EU employs her development funds to force her will down the throat of African governments and under-develop the continent.


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1507/08 The Real Dangers of EPA to ECOWAS

Ken Ukoha

Ken Ukaoha is the President of National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS) and a member of the Nigerian negotiating team on Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) for ECOWAS. He underlines that the EPA in its present form is dangerous to ECOWAS and the whole of Africa. One of the dangers of the trade agreement is that it is a recipe for massive land grabbing and consequent conflicts. The agreement is a systemic slavery for Africa. The way forward is to renegotiate the EPA at the level of African union.




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1409 The EPA: Risk for food sovereignty

tl_files/aefjn-files/epas/epas_materials/Soverania Alimentaria y EPAs.jpgOver the last three decades African countries have benefited from a preferential access to the European market. The EPA is going to modify this relationship dramatically. Africa is called upon to open up its own market and the EPA is based upon the principle of reciprocity. Agriculture constitutes the pillar of the African economy and the means of subsistence for the majority of its population. The EU affirms that the African consumers will draw profit from the EPA thanks to low-cost food products imported from Europe. But, in truth, who will profit from this? Food and agriculture are strategic national interests and the charge of them must not be entrusted to foreign firms and governments. A free-exchange agreement with the EU will have an impact not only on commercial relationships on the regional level but will also limit the national space in matters of policy for the support of agriculture and food sovereignty.


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1406 Potential scenarios for the EPAs and implications for the Continental FTA process

tl_files/aefjn-images/im_epas/im_csr/1406 Foto potencial EPAS.jpgIn January 2012, the African Union Summit took the decision to establish a fast-track Continental Free Trade Agreement Area (CFTA) by 2017 with the aim of boosting intra-African trade. For this reason, how different countries progress in the EPA negotiations will have important implications for the promotion of intra-African trade within the context of the CFTA. Many are the challenges that African countries have to face in adapting their industry and economy to the EPAs, such as strengthening their capacity for production, improving infrastructure or streamlining trade facilitation. If African countries sign the EPAs, the continent will be flooded with European products and will have to compete with economies that have a high level of development. In their effort to strengthen their productive capacity, the poorest countries in Africa will lose the opportunity to develop their domestic industries in higher value products and will be limited to trading with lower value products. Therefore, what should be an opportunity will in fact be a continuation of the same old situation.


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1402 West African Civil Society Declaration on EPA Signing


The negotiations on Economic Partnership Agreement between West African Countries (ECOWAS) and the European Union (EU) seem to have reached the end of technical discussions and both groups are now ready to sign an Agreement. Civil society has tried to prevent this agreement because of the disadvantages that it holds for West African countries and their population. While the concession of the EU to African countries has been to liberalise 75% of trade over 20 years, countries like Ghana will have to waiver important products such as textiles, detergents, metals and pharmaceuticals, which are crucial for its industrial development. ECOWAS negotiators have sacrificed their national and regional markets for European goods - this is likely to lead to the demise of domestic manufacturing with the loss of thousands of factories, jobs and, above all, the prospects for the developmental transformation of West African economies.


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The European Union (EU) is presenting new obstacle in the negotiations for economic partnership with Kenya. The EU thinks South Africa would avoid the restrictions to export some products into the EU through the Kenyan market. It is not just a problem of a bilateral agreement between the EU and Kenya but a problem of concurrence among the internal market among regions in Africa. 


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SADC scrambles to meet EU trade deadline


Trade ministers from South African Development Community (SADEC) have met Botswana to   establish a common position on the new Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union (EU) ahead of next year’s deadline. The economies of Botswana and Namibia will be the region’s biggest losers when the EU revises the preferential trade scheme as they will lose the duty and quota free access to the EU market.


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