February 2016
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 Video guest: Erich Schaitza




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EDITO
Friday, 12 February 2016

A clear decrease in sales of Malagasy lychees on the European market was recorded between the 18th-22nd January. The lychee newsletter from the Toamasina Horticultural Technical Centre says that “Little by little the product is no longer amongst the most consumed fruits. General bad sales have led to fruit stocking and quality has begun decreasing, notably for batches sent earlier from Madagascar”. The decrease in sales on the European market is largely due to competition from South African fruit, which is often larger and deemed to have a better taste.

French investors from the Bordeaux Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Municipal Council of Bordeaux will be in the country from February 8-13 to explore business opportunities as well as build concrete partnerships with local entrepreneurs. The visit is a spin-off from a series of successful meetings held between a group of Ghanaian corporate, municipal and academic delegates and their Paris counterparts during President John Dramani Mahama’s trip to France in October, 2015.

Representatives of Liberia and the EU have met to review progress towards implementation of their Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA), which aims to ensure Liberia exports only legal timber products to the EU. The Liberia-EU VPA Joint Implementation Committee (JIC) met for the 3rd time on 20-22 January in Monrovia. The JIC is the body established to oversee the implementation of the agreement. “I am really encouraged by the progress we have made in the implementation of this agreement since our last meeting,” said Sister Mary Laurene Browne, Chair of the Board of Liberia’s Forest Development Authority (FDA) and Co-Chair of the JIC.

There is a great potential for cultural businesses in the Pacific to sell their products in international markets and grow their business, says the EU ambassador to Fiji and the Pacific, Andrew Jacobs. In order to show its support for cultural businesses to receive international exposure and secure markets, the EU and the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States has made it possible for four small businesses from the Pacific to be part of the Winter 2016 Artisan Resources @ NYNOW Tradeshow in the US from January 31 to February 3, 2016.

The governments of Galicia and Cape Verde have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish a permanent collaboration in areas such as fishing, tourism, environment and education, among others. The agreement was signed by the Vice President of the Xunta, Alfonso Rueda, and the Minister of Tourism, Investment and Business Development of the Republic of Cape Verde, Leonesa Fuertes, within the framework of an intense institutional agenda of the Vice President of the Xunta and the Head of Foreign Affairs and the EU, Jesus Gamallo, in the African archipelago.