Trade ministers from Africa and Latin America met last week in Marrakesh to discuss the state of South-South trade. Despite recent advancements, trade between developing countries remains low.
To thwart a deepening food crisis on the continent, the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation is proposing the creation of a Free Trade Area (FTA) for Africa that will facilitate a seamless flow of strategic commodities across national borders while maintaining high profit margins.
Chinese investment in African countries comes with few strings attached — which is exactly what concerns civil society organisations.
France, the forthcoming holder of the European Union’s rotating presidency, has asked that the bloc display greater flexibility in talks aimed at reaching free trade accords with Africa.
As a result of the free trade agreements with the European Union, called economic partnership agreements, regional integration in Southern Africa is in tatters. The question arises: what kind of integration would engender broad-based development?
The Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) agenda of the European Commission (EC) clearly illustrates the masquerade of its disdainful approach towards Africa in an accelerated disregard for the EU’s coherence policy.
Senegalese Minister for Commerce Mamadou Diop has warned that African governments will continue to be pushed around by the European Union and its allies if they continue to adopt an individualistic approach to negotiating for fair trade deals.
Civil society organisations and the parliamentarians last week clashed with the trade ministry officials over the signing of an interim Economic Partnership Agreement (EPAs) with the European Union.
Africa’s trade unions called on their governments to nullify the interim trade agreements they have signed with the European Union, saying they leave African nations "weak" within the global market.
The Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry of South Africa, Rob Davies, has called on African leaders to ignore the Economic Partnership Agreement proposed by the European Commission since the continent is presently not ready for it.
As the recently initialled interim Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) continues to take centre stage, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in Africa have vowed to step up their stop-EPA campaign saying the pact has contentious issues.
Kenya signed an interim trade pact with the European Union in mid November to save its domestic and foreign investors who would have preferred to relocate to lowly ranked neighbouring states in the region, a senior official has disclosed.
Ahead of another round of negotiations to conclude the economic partnership agreements with the European Union, civil society from East and Southern Africa meet in Kampala this week to take a common position on the remaining issues — services, agriculture, investment, competition and government procurement.
Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), including farmers, workers, women, faith-based and students groups and organisations drawn from across Africa, have decried the negotiations on the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) between Europe and the continent as another form of re-colonisation.
Nine civil society organisations in southern Africa have called on the European Union and its Trade Commission to align its economic partnership proposals with Africa’s economic integration plans.
African group of ambassadors who on Friday met in Brussels expressed satisfaction at declaration of the AU assembly of heads of state and government on EPA negotiations.
The European Union is determined to get those African countries on board which have so far kicked against the economic partnership agreements. A two-part article from Aileen Kwa.
Declaration of civil society organisations at the meeting of the Africa Trade Network, Cape Town, South Africa, 22 February 2008
Trade talks between the European Union and African countries have been a public relations "disaster" for the Brussels bureaucracy, a high-ranking official confessed Feb. 26.