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Fiji joins EU-Pacific regional trade agreement

Swedish Presidency of the EU | 11 December 2009

Fiji joins EU-Pacific regional trade agreement

Fiji has today in Copenhagen signed on to the interim Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between the EU and the countries of the Pacific. The EU and Fiji’s Pacific neighbour, Papua New Guinea, signed the agreement in July 2009 but at that stage Fiji still needed more time to complete its internal procedures.

Fiji and Papua New Guinea are two of the fourteen Pacific countries that belong to the ACP-group of states (Africa, Caribbean, Pacific) but together they represent more than 80% of the Pacific region’s exports to the EU.

The agreement focuses on trade in goods and includes important provisions on rules of origin for the fisheries sector and thanks to this agreement, Fiji will continue to enjoy duty-free and quota-free access to the European market. It is expected that the agreement will contribute to increased trade with the EU and within the region and thus to the creation of growth, jobs and development in Fiji.

The agreement was signed by Fiji’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation H.E Ratu Inoke Kubuabola in the margins of the ongoing Copenhagen Climate Conference, and in the presence of representatives of the Swedish EU Presidency and the European Commission.

 source: Swedish Presidency of the EU