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Tuesday, 19 June 2018
EU requests second WTO arbitration on its revised proposal for the banana import regime
The EU today submitted a request for a second arbitration on its proposal for a new import tariff for bananas from countries benefiting from Most Favoured Nation status. The Commission has carefully analyzed the award from the first arbitration. It is confident that its revised proposal for an import duty of € 187/tonne for MFN suppliers and a tariff quota of 775,000 tonnes at zero duty for bananas originating in ACP countries maintains market access for MFN suppliers and an equivalent level of preference for ACP suppliers as the current regime. The intention remains to have a tariff only system in place on 1 January 2006.
Economic Partnership Agreements: EU and Caribbean Region launch third phase of negotiations
EU Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson travels to St Lucia today to launch the third phase of Economic Partnership Agreement negotiations between the European Union and the Caribbean region. The crucial third phase will launch negotiations on the text of a final agreement, encompassing the continued integration of the Caribbean regional economy and access to the European goods and services market. He will also exchange views with his Caribbean partners on the WTO Doha trade talks.

Wednesday, 28 September 2005
CIDSE press communiqué on outcome of UN World Summit, 16 September 2005
The World Summit fell far short of expectations but we cannot simply write it off.
'Judging from its outcome, it is merely a reiteration of old promises. But alongside the agreed bottom line, individual member states have lined up in a kind of beauty contest to set out their own initiatives and commitments to international co-operation,' observed Paul Chitnis, President of CIDSE. 'The 350,000 citizens who have participated in the CIDSE postcard campaign and the millions involved in the Global Call to Action against Poverty will hold their governments accountable to these commitments. They will challenge them to finally translate all their long made promises into action.

The first test will be the Annual Meetings of the International Financial Institutions next week when the modalities of the July G8 Summit's decision to cancel the debts of 18 highly indebted countries will be hammered out. While debt relief was strongly endorsed by the World Summit, many governments of rich countries are in fact attempting to undermine the decision on debt cancellation. 'Rich countries cannot afford to go back on this decision', Chitnis said. 'It will not only put their leadership in question but will come at a high cost for those to whom every dollar spent in paying off their countries' debts is a dollar less to spend on food, education and fighting diseases.'
Viewing the challenge at a larger level, he observed, 'Multilateralism was gravely compromised in the final preparatory phase of the Summit when some countries held the success of the summit hostage to their own interests. It is urgently necessary for world leaders to address this breakdown and prove their commitment to a global partnership for development and renewal.'
'The Millennium Development Goals, which were developed to tackle the most urgent crises including the lack of food security, inequitable distribution of resources and debt, demand global action. A strong United Nations is crucial in this endeavor,' he ended.
The 10th session of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly will take place in Edinburgh ( United Kingdom) from 19 to 24 November 2005.
The JPA will deal with major issues related to the ACP-EU partnership and will adopt the following reports:
- The role of National Parliaments in implementing the Cotonou Partnership Agreement. Mr Mauro Zani and Mr Abubakar Bawa Bwari ( Nigeria), the Co-Rapporteurs, are putting forward concrete suggestions to increase the control of parliaments in ACP countries in the planning and use of development aid money;
- Agricultural and mining commodities. This report, drafted by Mr Louis-Claude Nyassa ( Cameroon) and Mr Nirj Deva, raised the question of how ACP countries could better benefit from their resources, in particular in the context of the negotiation of the Economic Partnership Agreements and the WTO negotiations, one month before the Hong Kong Summit;
- Finally, Mr Barry Faure ( Seychelles) and Ms Fiona Hall will present a report on the causes and consequences of natural disasters, a topic more acute than ever. They insist on a policy of early warning and prevention, including the reduction of CO2 emissions. They also express themselves in favour of a facility for natural catastrophies.
Beyond the reports, the JPA will discuss urgency topics such as the situation in West Africa and the registration, the evaluation and the authorisation of chemical substances (REACH).
The JPA will also hear and debate with the Presidency of the ACP-EU Joint Council, namely Minister Hilary Benn (U.K.) and Olivier Andrianarison (Madagascar), as well as with Commissioner Louis Michel.
The European Commission has today set out the details of its proposal for a new programme to fund research and development from 2007 to 2013. The Specific Programmes proposed by the Commission put into effect the broad outline proposed by the Commission in April 2005, known as the Seventh Framework Programme, composed of 4 main elements: Co-operation, Ideas, People and Capacities. These will be discussed with the European Parliament, before being decided by the Council.
The four major Specific Programmes proposed today are:
- Co-operation: The Cooperation programme is designed to gain leadership in key scientific and technological areas by supporting cooperation between universities, industry, research centres and public authorities across the European Union as well as the rest of the world.
- Ideas: The Ideas programme will establish a European Research Council, a pan-European mechanism to support the truly creative scientists, engineers and scholars.
- People: The People programme looks to strengthen the human resources available to science and research across Europe, both qualitatively and quantitatively.
- Capacities: The Capacities specific programme will enhance research and innovation capacity throughout Europe. This includes elements such as new research infrastructure, support for small and medium-sized companies, developing ‘regions of knowledge’...