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October 2017
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Monday, 23 October 2017

The French group Somdiaa announced at the end of September that it was committed, as part of its Sustainable Development Policy, to implementing ‘green harvesting’ in some of its subsidiaries (Cameroon, Gabon, Côte d’Ivoire), in particular in the sugar sector. ‘Green harvesting,’ says Somdiaa, ‘has many advantages, including reducing the use of chemical fertilisers thanks to biomass (residual straw) from the harvest.’ The French agro-industrial group hopes that this cultivation technique will also lead to a reduction in the use of herbicides, in soil erosion and CO2 emissions into the atmosphere. The ultimate goal is to improve the quality of the sugar cane.

At the Carlton, Madagascar is currently hosting the sixth meeting of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) committee, bringing together all five signatory countries from the Eastern Africa, Southern Africa, and Indian Ocean (EASAIO) region. During the two days of the sixth meeting of the EPA committee, the positive impacts of the Economic Partnership Agreement with the European Union will be discussed, as will barriers to trade development. The entry into force of the EPA since 2012 has allowed a significant increase in trade between Madagascar and the countries of the European Union.

On Friday 29 September 2017, the Minister of Economy and Finance signed two financing agreements with Ambassador Gerardus Gielen, Head of the European Union Delegation in Guinea, as part of the third phase of the Security Sector Reform Support Programme and the Transport Governance Support Project in Guinea. The signing ceremony took place in the presence of Minister of State for Security and Civil Protection Abdoul Kabele Camara, Minister of the Environment, Water and Forests Assiatou Baldé, and the Secretaries-General of the Ministries of Transport, Technical Education, Vocational Training, Employment and Labour.

With the quotas for the production and export of sugar coming to an end on 30 September, the European Union, which until now was a net importer of sugar, is poised to become an exporter. African producers, already facing very low prices, will have to deal with this new competition. Since 30 September, there is no longer a limit on the production or export of sugar within the European Union. The decision, taken by Brussels in mid-2014 as part of its reform of the Common Agricultural Policy, is not without consequences for African countries, whose local production will have to compete with European sugar.

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

ACP Secretariat

16-18 October: ACP Senior Trade Officials and ACP Regional Organisations “Follow-up” Group on EPA negotiations and implementation
18-19 October: 20th Ministerial Trade Committee
20 October: 15th Joint Ministerial Trade Committee and Ministerial Roundtable

European Commission

20 October: Putting partnership into practice: Making the best of the toolbox to promote investment in ACP countries, to connect value chains and industrialise

European Parliament

16-19 October: European Parliament Committee Meetings

European Council

16 October: Foreign Affairs Council
16-19 October: Young European Council
17 October: Competitiveness Council
17 October: General Affairs Council
19 October: Coreper I
19-20 October: European Council

Other Events

17 October: InfoPoint Lunchtime Conference - Putting the spotlight on small-scale women farmers
19 October: InfoPoint Lunchtime Conference - Migration policy-making

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