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[CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter N° 242]
Subject: [CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter N° 242]
Send date: 2010-10-01 14:19:04
Issue #: 58
Content:
Bulletin CTA
1

This weblog shares information on key ACP-EU programmes and events
from Brussels relevant to agriculture and rural development in ACP countries.


Date : [DATE]
CTA Brussels Newsletter

 

Main events in the week
  1. Briefing: Strengthening the Caribbean agri-food private sector
  2. Main ACP-EU events for the week of 04/10 to 08/10/2010
  3. Our video guest: Mr.Devarajan, World Bank
  4. Brussels Briefing on Financing Agriculture
  5. South Africa's Zuma calls for end to Zimbabwe sanctions
  6. The EU allocates € 10 million to fight epidemic outbreaks
  7. Africa needs tougher laws to allow EU companies into its services sector
  8. CAP reform debate hijacked by new priorities
  9. East Africa EPA delay frustrates EU
  10. Council authorises signature of EU-Korea Free Trade Agreement
  11. European plan for the creation of green jobs
  12. Commission sets up new energy labels
  13. Financial Report 2009: How the EU spent its budget
  14. Commissioner Piebalgs' first visit to Rwanda to assess EU's aid impact
  15. Roadmap for development cooperation with Niger
  16. Access to genetic resources and benefit-sharing
  17. Prolongation of appropriate measures against Fiji Islands
  18. Economic Partnership Agreement between the EU and the CARIFORUM
  19. Renewal of agreement between the EC, Cape Verde and Guinea Bissau
  20. Agreement against illegal logging between EU and Cameroon
  21. Public consultation on revision of the tobacco products Directive
  22. Rules of Origin in EU-ACP Economic Partnership Agreements
  23. Sanitary, Phytosanitary and Technical Barriers to Trade in EPAs
  24. EPAs and WTO Compatibility - A Development Perspective


  1. Briefing: Strengthening the Caribbean agri-food private sector
    2010-10-01
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development, Aid effectiveness, Environment, Archive, Regional Fisheries, Food Security

    The CTA and its partners will held the second regional Briefing in the Caribbean on "Strengthening the Caribbean agri-food private sector: challenges for SMEs in the agri-food sector in the Caribbean"on 18-19th October at the occasion of the Caribbean Agricultural Week. The ACP regional Briefings are linked to the Brussels Briefings (http://brusselsbriefings.net). This Briefing will discuss the challenges that the Caribbean private sector faces in the context of the financial and food crises as well as the resulting increased demand for agricultural products. While looking at the broader economic environment,it will examine the key issues involved on value chains and clusters. Access to finance by the private sector has always remained a major challenge and SMEs still struggle to access finance due to some stringent requirements by commercial banks and the existing and potential financing mechanisms in support of the private sector at regional level will be reviewed. Finally, the last panel will look into the startegies needed for repositioning Caribbean agriculture.

     


    Link  ACP Regional Briefings
    Link Programme
    Link Registration Form


  2. Main ACP-EU events for the week of 04/10 to 08/10/2010
    2010-10-01
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development, Aid effectiveness, Environment, Archive, Regional Fisheries, Food Security

    European Parliament (Brussels):
    -04th - 05th October: Meeting of the Development Committee
    -04th - 05th October: Exchange of view with Commissioner Connie Hedegaard
    -06th -07th October: Plenary Session
    EU Presidency (Brussels):
    -07th - 08th October: Justice and Home Affairs Council
    -07th - 08th October: Informal Council on Culture and Audiovisual

    For more information please consult the calendar on our webpage http://brussels.cta.int 


    Link European Parliament
    Link Belgian EU Presidency
    Link ACP Secretariat


  3. Our video guest: Mr.Devarajan, World Bank
    2010-10-01
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness, Rural development

    Our video guest this week is Mr. Shantayanan Devarajan , he is the Chief Economist of the Africa Region at World Bank. Mr. Devarajan was in Brussels for a consultation meeting on the World Bank's "Renewed Strategy for Africa" on the 14th of September, 2010. On this occasion, he gave us an interview where he spoke about his work at the World Bank. Mr. Devarajan also explained in depth the issues of rural productivity, rural youth and gender.


    Link Watch the video
    Link Renewed Strategy for Africa
    Link Mr. Devarajan


  4. Brussels Briefing on Financing Agriculture
    2010-10-01
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development, Aid effectiveness, Food Security

    Over 160 participants attended the 20th Brussels Development Briefing on ‘Financing agriculture’ on 15 September 2010 at the Borschette Center, Brussels, Belgium. As an input to the UN Summit on MDGs to be held in New York on 22-26 September 2010, the meeting discussed issues related to financing development in the context of agriculture and rural development. This included issues such as aid and overseas development assistance (ODA), taxation (domestic tax revenues), private investment (new donors), Private Public Partnerships and revenue generation. Speakers included representatives from the Imperial College in London, the Partnership to Cut Hunger and Poverty in Africa in the US, the European NGO Confederation for Relief and Development.(CONCORD), the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the African Development Bank (AFDB), , YARA, the Investment Facility of the World Bank, the European Investment Bank, African regional farmers organizations and CTA Director, M. Hailu. The discussions were moderated by H.E. Abdou Abarry, Ambassador of Niger and Ishmael Sunga, CEO of SACAU and the conclusions were made by H.E. Patrick Gomes, Chair of the ACP Committee of Ambassadors.

     


    Link Read more
    Link Feed Back of participants


  5. South Africa's Zuma calls for end to Zimbabwe sanctions
    2010-10-01
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness

    South Africa's President Jacob Zuma was at the European Parliament Wednesday (29 September) to hold talks with MEPs. His main message was for sanctions to be lifted against neighbouring Zimbabwe. He said they had hurt South Africa and harmed Harare's path to political reconciliation between Robert Mugabe's Zanu PF party and Morgan Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change. He was in Brussels for Tuesday's EU-South Africa Summit which discussed climate change, trade and development issues.
    In his first visit to the Parliament after becoming South Africa's President, Mr Zuma held talks with MEPs on the Foreign Affairs and Development Committees. He also held a meeting with EP President Jerzy Buzek.

    Source: European Parliament


    Link Read more
    Link EU-South Africa summit
    Link South Africa Presidency


  6. The EU allocates € 10 million to fight epidemic outbreaks
    2010-09-30
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Archive

    Today, the European Commission has allocated €10 million from its humanitarian aid budget to reduce the impact of epidemics on vulnerable people in developing countries and to support emergency operations to address outbreaks of communicable diseases. These funds will help an estimated 3,600,000 individuals living in areas at high risk of epidemics to receive proper protection against diseases. Populations in these countries are exposed to great risks to their health, lives and livelihoods. National resources to fight against epidemics are often exhausted causing major, even regional, emergencies. Commissioner Georgieva said: "Epidemic outbreaks pose major risks to the world's poorest populations, because of their decreased ability to respond to shocks of all kinds. Populations already affected by natural and man-made disasters are particularly vulnerable. A timely and adequate response to epidemic outbreaks, combined with appropriate preparedness action, can help save thousands of lives.” She added: ”For example, between 25 and 50 percent of cholera cases are fatal if untreated, but the correct treatment of the disease can reduce mortality rates to below 1-2 percent." The Commission funding will go towards the prevention and rapid response to diseases with an epidemic potential such as meningitis, measles, cholera, yellow fever and dengue. Measles, in particular, remains one of the leading causes of death among young children globally and caused the death of 164,000 people in 2008 – mostly children under the age of five. The Commission assistance is driven by two objectives: preparedness - including surveillance, early warning systems, prevention, planning and stockpiling - as well as the capacity to respond effectively to the outbreaks. In that regard, the funding will emphasize the pre-positioning and provision of effective emergency items such as medical supplies and water and sanitation products.

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link ECHO
    Link EuropeAid


  7. Africa needs tougher laws to allow EU companies into its services sector
    2010-09-30

    With African countries’ trade remaining inordinately dependent on natural resources exports, their economies could benefit from liberalisation of trade in services but only as long as proper domestic regulatory frameworks are put in place, some trade experts argue. Natural resources like minerals, fish, timber and fuels constitute a staggering 73 percent of Africa’s exports, compared to 14 percent of the European Union’s (EU) exports.  Only five percent of exports are traded within Africa, with the balance destined for the industrial centres of China, India, the European Union (EU) and the US. The continent’s dependency on these markets became apparent when demand plummeted in the wake of the financial crisis, putting an end to the 2003-2008 commodities boom, said Sean Woolfrey, researcher at the Trade Law Centre of Southern Africa (Tralac), at Tralac’s annual meeting on Sep 16-17 in Cape Town, South Africa.

    Demand falls

    The non-profit Tralac provides capacity-building support to governments and other entities.
    Angola’s oil fields, Zambia’s copper belt and Botswana’s diamond mines, among others, have created dangerously one-sided development paths, trade experts noted at the conference.
    “Significant policy space is available

    Source: Businessdailyafrica


    Link Read more
    Link Tralac
    Link Services trade


  8. CAP reform debate hijacked by new priorities
    2010-09-30
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Environment

    While the future budget of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is still unclear, growing rhetoric around the concepts of "public goods" and "green growth" suggest that at least some of the money could be shifted to protecting the environment and boosting rural economies. The ongoing debate over the CAP's future is taking place in a broader context than previous reforms. First, as farm policy still eats up the largest share of the EU budget – at around 40% – the upcoming overhaul is closely linked to the revision of the bloc's financial perspectives for the 2014-2021 period. The reform is also taking place amid discussions over how to recover from the economic crisis and deal with climate change and the increasing volatility of world commodity markets, some of which are being tackled in the bloc's 'Europe 2020' strategy for growth and jobs. According to the European Commission, the CAP is likely to be adjusted to 'Europe 2020' goals on promoting a more competitive economy that fosters higher employment, social and territorial cohesion. In addition, the CAP's contribution to environmental challenges, in particular the fight against climate change and biodiversity loss, as well as boosting resource efficiency, water management and bio energy, "are expected to be reinforced," the Commission says.

    Source: Euractiv


    Link Read more
    Link CAP after 2013
    Link Roadmap


  9. East Africa EPA delay frustrates EU
    2010-09-30
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    The European Union (EU )is frustrated at the slow pace of the conclusion of an Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the East African Community (EAC) member states. This is contained in a statement by Harvey Rouse, the head of the political and trade section at the EU Mission to Uganda. “The EAC-EU Framework EPA was initialled in Kampala in 2007. This agreement today remains unsigned, business is therefore in an unpredictable and uncertain environment, it is important that we put an end to this legal uncertainty,” the statement reads. The EPA negotiations have been dogged by a number of controversial issues including the meaning of market access to the EU by EAC countries. “The EU and EAC agreed to set up a roadmap as soon as possible for the achievement of a comprehensive EPA. The EU considered it in EAC’s interest that the five EAC countries establish a joint roadmap,” Rouse said.

    Source: The New Vision (Uganda)


    Link Read more
    Link EAC
    Link EU-EAC EPA


  10. Council authorises signature of EU-Korea Free Trade Agreement
    2010-09-30
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    The Foreign Affairs Council, in the margins of the European Council of mid September, has authorised the signature of the EU-Korea Free Trade Agreement. This is a key step towards making this deal a reality. The EU-Korea Free Trade agreement is the most ambitious trade agreement ever negotiated by the EU. It breaks new ground in delivering market access for European companies as well as the way regulatory issues are addressed. The FTA is the EU's first deal with an Asian partner and a clear signal that the EU is open for business.

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link European Commission Statement
    Link EU Trade with Korea


  11. European plan for the creation of green jobs
    2010-09-29
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    On the occasion of the first ever ministerial conference on "green jobs", Deputy Prime Minister Joëlle Milquet and European Commissioner László Andor have launched the proposal for a first European plan for the creation of jobs in the "green" sectors and for the "greening" of the economy and the labour market. Objective of the Belgian Presidency: adoption of conclusions laying out a major Commission initiative, in 2011, to establish the principles and methodology for a plan to create green jobs and thereby ensure the greening of the economy. The Belgian Presidency will promote the adoption by the December 2010 EPSCO Council of the conclusions that have just been submitted to the 27 Member States for discussion. The European Commission will then be asked to use these conclusions to establish, in 2011, the principles and a methodology of a plan to create green jobs and to ensure the greening of the economy. In order to advance its work on the theme of "employment policies to promote transition to a low carbon emission economy" and to prepare a series of recommendations and green job indicators, the Belgian Presidency has asked EMCO (the Employment Committee) to deliver an opinion. The European Economic and Social Committee has also been asked for an opinion. These various initiatives, as well as the face-to-face exchanges that will take place during this ministerial conference, should lead to adoption of the conclusions by the EPSCO Council.

    Source: Belgian EU Presidency


    Link Read more
    Link Europe 2020
    Link Green jobs


  12. Commission sets up new energy labels
    2010-09-29
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    The European Commission today for the very first time proposed energy labels for TVs. For refrigerators, dishwashers and washing machines the existing label scheme will be updated Energy labels help consumers choosing products which save energy and thus money. They also provide incentives for industry to develop and invest in energy efficient product design. Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger said: "Energy labels move the market towards highly energy efficient products which is a major contribution to reaching Europe's energy efficiency, competitiveness and climate change goals. At the same time, they save money for consumers" For televisions, which represent almost 10% of the average household's electricity bill, it will be the first time ever that manufacturers will have to declare the energy efficiency of their products, using an A to G scale. The label must be clearly shown on the TV set and in advertisements, if the prize of TV is mentioned. Energy labelling of refrigerators-freezers, dishwashers and washing machines has already been hugely successful since its introduction in 1992: today 90% of appliances sold in the EU are in class "A" – the best existing class. However, new technologies would allow reducing by half the energy consumption of an A-class product. The EU has therefore decided to extend the scale upwards with three new classes: "A+", "A++", and "A+++" for products with a better than A-performance. The appliances covered by the regulations adopted today represent one third of a household's electricity bill a year. The new labels will therefore have a positive impact on consumers' household expenses. The four regulations for these labels will now have to be agreed by the European Parliament and Council. The Regulations enters into force 12 months after publication in the Official Journal.

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link Energy labelling
    Link Q&A on new energy labels


  13. Financial Report 2009: How the EU spent its budget
    2010-09-29
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness

    The 2009 financial report presented by the Commission today shows that 97% of appropriations were spent, a similar percentage as in 2008 (98%). Overall expenditure amounted to over €112 billion. The bulk of this sum went to measures to boost economic growth, employment and research and development, as well as on agriculture.

    €44 billion invested in growth and competitiveness

    In 2009, the EU spent €6.3 billion within the 7th framework programme for research and technology. EU funds supported over 1,000 research cooperation projects such as the 'Fuel-Path' project on efficient biofuel production; the aim of this project is to find ways to improve biofuel production and help ensure at least 14% of bio-energy in EU's energy mix by 2020.

    Under the Competitiveness and innovation Programme over 34,000 small and medium enterprises benefited from EU funds. These funds helped them leverage €2.9 billion in loans for an EU financing of €295 million. It is estimated that the EU funding helped create or save over 200,000 jobs between 2007 and 2008. Furthermore, the Erasmus programme financed over 300,000 mobility grants involving 4,000 universities.

    The share of cohesion policy in the budget remained high. Payments under the 2007-2013 framework amounted to €25.5 billion, more than twice as much as in 2008 (€11.5 billion). In the 2000-2006 period, cohesion policy funding created around 1 million jobs, helped build or improve 4,000km of railways and brought water supply to 14 million more people. Among the numerous projects funded in 2009, the “Baltic Master II” project focuses on improving the response capacity in the Baltic Sea area to oil spills and on enhancing the prevention of pollution from maritime transport.

    Over 30% of the 2009 budget was dedicated to economic recovery and growth, says EU Commissioner for budget Janusz Lewandowski. Every euro we invest in our regions can generate twice or three times as much through the "leverage effect". This is where the EU budget makes a real difference on the ground.

    Over €40 billion towards rural areas, over 100,000 young people involved in projects and exchanges

    After years of increasing income, EU farmers have seen their revenue fall because of changing market conditions. The EU budget supports them with over €40 billion in direct aids and market interventions, accounting for almost half of farmers' income.

    Developing and protecting EU citizens' rights and opportunities is an increasing focus of the EU budget. In 2009 110,000 young people participated in projects and exchanges. The EU also came to the aid of five Member States in need of fire fighting equipment, and provided antiviral drugs to Bulgaria. The Solidarity Fund provided €623 million to mitigate the impact of natural disasters, in particular in the wake of the earthquake in Southern Italy.

    More than €10 billion spent on external actions

    In 2009, the EU was the second largest provider of development aid in the world, with commitments amounting to €12 billion and reaching around 140 developing countries. Specific instruments were set up to help the world's poorest to face the triple economic food and environmental crisis.

    EU humanitarian aid and food assistance helped over 150 million people in 70 countries in 2009. Moreover, in the framework of the Common foreign and security policy, the EU managed 10 missions in hotspots across the world, such as Kosovo, Southern Caucasus, Afghanistan, the Middle East and Africa. Specific funding is dedicated to preparing candidate and potential candidate countries meet the EU membership conditions.

    One of the biggest recipients of external aid is Sudan (115 million). 3.6 million people benefited from food assistance in Darfur and 436 000 in South Sudan, whereas more than 5 million people benefited from health care and 1.3 million beneficiaries were reached by water, sanitation and hygiene promotion.

    More and more the EU is asked to intervene beyond its borders, whether in times of conflicts or natural disasters, says Janusz Lewandowski. We have had to adjust the financial framework four times in recent years compared to never over the previous twenty years or so, which shows the need for more flexibility for tomorrow's EU budget.

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link Financial report


  14. Commissioner Piebalgs' first visit to Rwanda to assess EU's aid impact
    2010-09-29
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness, Rural development

    Commissioner Piebalgs' first visit to Rwanda to assess EU's aid impact on the ground and sign €52 million financial agreements on regional cooperation and governance. From 28 to 30 September, EU Commissioner for Development Andris Piebalgs will pay his first visit to Rwanda. He will travel together with Belgian Minister for Development Cooperation Charles Michel, on behalf of the EU Belgian Presidency. They will have bilateral meetings with high level Rwandese authorities. EU Commissioner Piebalgs will take this opportunity to sign two financial agreements, for a total amount of €51.85 million. The first agreement aims at supporting regional road connections and cross-border cooperation in the field of energy and hydropower; the second will support Rwanda to improve public financial management based on sound statistics. EU Commissioner Piebalgs and Belgian Minister Charles Michel will also visit the Commission's and Belgian funded projects to assess the impact of the aid on the ground. Andris Piebalgs said: "One week after global leaders reaffirmed their ambition to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, I have chosen to visit Rwanda, which is one of the few African countries to be "on track" towards their achievement. It proves that we can do it, and I want to see which concrete impact EU aid has had on the ground. Rwanda also showed that in a peaceful context and with stable institutions, aid can act as a catalyst to create an environment for sustainable and inclusive economic growth".

    Signature of Financial Agreements

    During his trip the Commissioner will sign two financial agreements:

    1. Signature of an agreement for an amount of €45 million to support the Economic Community of the Great Lakes Countries (CEPGL), which brings together Rwanda, Burundi and the Congo. The project aims at rehabilitating road connections between 6 neighbouring cities in the three member countries and also by funding CEPGL cooperation in the field of energy and hydropower.

    2. Together with Finance Minister John Rwangombwe Commissioner Piebalgs will sign an agreement for an amount of €6, 85 million to support the Statistical Institute and Public Finance Management.

    Impact of EU's aid

    During their mission Commissioner Piebalgs and Minister Michel will visit numerous aid projects to evaluate how development aid works on the ground. The projects funded by the Commission include:

    •The bench terrace project which is considered as the best way to mitigate soil erosion and increase agricultural production. The EU programme implemented 1,800 hectares of bench terraces on cultivated lands in 6 districts, which directly benefited 15,047 households. The intervention had very positive impacts on job creation and future income perspectives.

    •Mpazi ravine restoration project pursued the double goal of preventing further degradation of the site and facilitating the socio-economic reintegration of demobilized combatants and other vulnerable individuals.

    •The objective of rehabilitation of the Ruhengeri-Giseyi road was to improve communication, reduce transport costs, facilitate imports and exports and thus contribute to the regional integration with this commercially and politically very important area.

    •EU support to coffee sector largely contributed to re-launching market-led cash-crop agriculture after the genocide which had the effect of depleting exports and decreasing land use. The main objectives of the programme were to a) improve farm and national revenues through re-launching added value export cash-crops, and b) increase livelihoods through local initiatives and a participatory approach.

    Background:

    In terms of development, Rwanda is one of the few ACP countries to be "on-track" to achieving most of the MDGS. For the period 2008–13, the 10th European Development Fund (EDF), main EU financial instrument for development aid, allocates €290 million to the country. 60% of the budget (€175M) focuses on social services such as education, health and water. The two priority areas are rural development (€40M) and infrastructure (€50M). Given Rwandan strong performance in implementing the cooperation, up to 75% of the EU aid is disbursed via budget support (general and sectoral).

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link EU Relations with Rwanda
    Link Rwanda Country Profile


  15. Roadmap for development cooperation with Niger
    2010-09-28

    The 3033rd Council Meeting  on Agriculture and Fisheries held in Brussels on 27 September 2010  adopted a decision setting out a roadmap to gradually resume development cooperation with Niger during its return to constitutional order, thus concluding consultations under article 96 of
    the ACP-EU Cotonou Agreement (13280/10).

    Source: Council of the European Union


    Link Read more
    Link EU Relations with Niger


  16. Access to genetic resources and benefit-sharing
    2010-09-28
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Regional Fisheries

    The 3033rd Council Meeting  on Agriculture and Fisheries held in Brussels on 27 September 2010  prolonged the authorisation for the Commission to participate on behalf of the EU in the negotiations on the international regime on access to genetic resources and benefit-sharing to include the tenth Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (13537/10).

    Source: Council of the European Union


    Link Read more
    Link DG Maritime Affairs


  17. Prolongation of appropriate measures against Fiji Islands
    2010-09-28

    The 3033rd Council Meeting  on Agriculture and Fisheries held in Brussels on 27 September 2010  adopted a decision extending by six months the measures in place since 2007 for the Republic of the Fiji Islands in order to assist the country's return to democracy, respect of human rights and the rule of law (13283/10). This decision follows the continued lack of progress in implementing key commitments Fiji had agreed with the EU in 2007. These commitments regard mainly the respect of democratic principles, the rule of law, human rights and fundamental freedoms.


    Link Read more
    Link EU Relations with Fiji


  18. Economic Partnership Agreement between the EU and the CARIFORUM
    2010-09-28
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    The 3033rd Council Meeting  on Agriculture and Fisheries held in Brussels on 27 September 2010  adopted a decision on the position to be taken by the European Union in the Joint CARIFORUM-EU Council established by the Economic Partnership Agreement between the CARIFORUM States and the EU, with regard to the amendment of Annex IV to the Agreement (12433/10). The Council's position seeks to introduce commitments in services and investment for the Commonwealth of The Bahamas and to provide for the provisional application of those amendments until the entry into force of the Agreement.

    Source: Council of the European Union


    Link Read more
    Link CARIFORUM
    Link EU-Caribbean relations


  19. Renewal of agreement between the EC, Cape Verde and Guinea Bissau
    2010-09-28
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Regional Fisheries

    La 3033ème session du Conseil Agriculture et Pêche, qui s’est tenue à Bruxelles le 27 septembre 2010, a autorisé la Commission à entamer des négociations en vue du renouvellement d’un protocole à l’accord de partenariat de pêche avec le Cap Vert (12600/10) et la Guinée-Bissau (12601/10).

    Source: Council of the European Union


    Link Read more
    Link EU Relations with Guinea-Bissau
    Link EU Relations with Cape Verde


  20. Agreement against illegal logging between EU and Cameroon
    2010-09-28
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment, ACP-EU Trade

    The 3033rd Council Meeting  on Agriculture and Fisheries held in Brussels on 27 September 2010  adopted a decision on the signing of a voluntary partnership agreement between the EU and the Republic of Cameroon on forest law enforcement, governance and trade in timber and derived products to the European Union (FLEGT) (12795/10 + 13187/10). The agreement is the third to be signed, after the one signed with Ghana in November 2009 and the one signed with Congo in May 2010.

    Source: Council of the European Union


    Link Read more
    Link Illegal logging
    Link ACP-FLEGT Support Programme


  21. Public consultation on revision of the tobacco products Directive
    2010-09-28
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Archive

    Today (24 September) the Commission launches a public consultation on the revision of the Tobacco Products Directive (2001/37/EC). The Commission invites all stakeholders to give their input on the different options and to comment on possible measures to improve awareness of the dangers of tobacco use, increase motivation to quit and discourage initiation of smoking. Examples of such measures that could be considered are bigger, double-sided health pictorial warnings on cigarette packages, plain packaging and the regulation of harmful, addictive and attractive substances in tobacco products. This consultation is an important step towards the adoption of a legislative proposal planned for beginning of 2012. EU Health Commissioner John Dalli said: "Tobacco is not a product like any other: it is addictive and it means illness and suffering for our citizens and avoidable healthcare spending for European governments. And, still, 30% of Europeans smoke. I am particularly concerned with the 35% of young Europeans who smoke. " To conclude: " On the eve of World Heart Day I want to remind Europeans that all tobacco exposure -- smoking, second-hand smoke or chewing - can increase the risk of heart attack or other cardiovascular problems".

    What are the current rules?

    The Tobacco Products Directive dates from 2001. It stipulates maximum limits in cigarettes for substances such as nicotine, tar and carbon monoxide. It also requires manufacturers to put textual health warnings on tobacco products and bans terms such as "light", "mild" or "low tar".

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link The consultation
    Link Tobacco policy in the EU


  22. Rules of Origin in EU-ACP Economic Partnership Agreements
    2010-09-27
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    This paper, entitled “Rules of Origin in EU-ACP Economic Partnership Agreements” written by
    Eckart Naumann provides an analysis of different rules of origin that currently apply between the EU and the ACP countries in sectors like textile and clothing, and fisheries. With the end of the Cotonou agreement and its replacement by the still incomplete EPAs, the rules of origin provisions applicable to exports from different ACP countries became ever more complex, but also less restrictive in some cases. For the ACP countries that were able to initial an Interim EPA, market access to the EU is provided for by an EU Council Regulation that guarantees the continuation of non-reciprocal preferences until the EPAs are implemented; this includes some specific rules of origin as well. For ACP countries that did not sign an Interim EPA, preferential market access to the EU falls within the provisions of the EU’s Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) or the Everything but Arm’s Initiative’(EAI), with their corresponding, different rules of origin.

    Source: International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development


    Link Read more
    Link Regional trade agreements
    Link Economic Partnership Agreements


  23. Sanitary, Phytosanitary and Technical Barriers to Trade in EPAs
    2010-09-27
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    Regional trade agreements (RTAs) have become a distinctive feature of the international trading landscape. Their number has increased significantly in recent years, as WTO Member countries continue to negotiate new agreements. Some 200-odd agreements have been notified to the WTO, but the real number may be higher, as some are never notified to the multilateral bodies, and many more are under negotiation. As a result, an increasing amount of trade is covered by preferential arrangements, prompting many analysts to suggest that RTAs are becoming the norm rather than the exception.
    Many regional pacts contain obligations that go beyond existing multilateral commitments, and others deal with areas not yet covered by the WTO, such as investment and competition policies, as well as with labor and environment issues. Regional and bilateral agreements between countries at different stages of development have become common, as have attempts to form region-wide economic areas by dismantling existing trade and investment barriers, an objective that figures prominently in East Asian countries’ trade strategies.
    Yet, the effects of RTAs on the multilateral trading system are still unclear. This is also true with respect to their impact on trade and sustainable development. RTAs represent a departure from the basic non-discrimination principle of the WTO and decrease the transparency of global trade rules, as traders are subject to multiple, sometime conflicting, requirements. This is particularly the case in relation to rules of origin, which can be extremely complex and often vary in different agreements concluded by the same country. Also, the case that WTO-plus commitments enhance sustainable development has yet to be proven. Indeed, it is not even clear whether RTAs enhance or hinder trade.
    This paper from ICTSD on "Sanitary, Phytosanitary and Technical Barriers to Trade in the Economic Partnership Agreements between the European Union and the ACP Countries" sets out a common vision on issues that could constitute sanitary, phytosanitary and technical barriers in EPAs and investigates how abusive use of these provisions could be an obstacle to market access. The study also promotes experience-sharing among different ACP regions in terms of drawing up negotiating positions. The issues covered include:
    • the EPAs’ disciplines on traditional barriers to market access, including tariffs and quotas;
    • provisions addressing non-traditional barriers to trade in the WTO agreements and the various EPAs;
    • technical regulations standards and conformity assessments procedures;
    • sanitary and phytosanitary measures;
    • the relationship between the EPAs’ rules on non-traditional barriers to trade and those in the WTO agreements period.

    Source: International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development


    Link Read more
    Link WTO
    Link Economic Partnership Agreements


  24. EPAs and WTO Compatibility - A Development Perspective
    2010-09-27
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    The discussion on WTO compatibility in the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) between the EU and ACP countries has so far been very narrowly defined, and largely from the perspective of the European Union. This Analytical Note presents a matrix providing a comparison of the EPA commitments the EU is asking ACP countries for, and treatment of these issues in the WTO, including where appropriate, the type of flexibilities available for the different developing country groupings at the WTO. The issues dealt with in this paper include: Market access for agricultural products; Market access for industrial or non-agricultural products; Extent of liberalisation-development benchmarks; Standstill clause; Quantitative Restrictions; Export Taxes; Rules of Origin; MFN Clause; Multilateral Safeguards; Bilateral Safeguards; Infant industry; Domestic Support in Agriculture; Export Subsidies in Agriculture; Intellectual Property; Services; Investment; Competition and Government Procurement.

    Source: South Centre


    Link Read more
    Link WTO
    Link Economic Partnership Agreements



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