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Wednesday, 30 March 2016

EU Lists Gains From Economic Partnership Agreement

The European Union (EU) has recently said that ratification of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) by the Federal Government would aid the diversification of the nation’s economy to boost revenue generation. EU Ambassador and Head of Delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Mr Michel Arrion, made the assertion in Lagos at an EU-West Africa, EPA Technical Workshop with the private sector. Arrion said the EPA would strengthen the country’s non-fuel sector’s performance thereby attracting more foreign investors from different parts of the world. He said that the EU had signed the agreement with ECOWAS, while some countries ratified it but Nigeria had yet to ratify. The EU ambassador said that EPA was good for Nigeria and urged the country to follow the steps of other ECOWAS countries by ratifying it. Arrion said that the EPA by definition would reduce import duties on importation of products coming from Europe on a progressive basis over a period of 20 years. “We have agreed that import duties will be reduced on machinery and investible equipment and basic raw materials to contribute to industrial policy of Nigeria and other countries in West Africa. “By doing that, we are helping those economies of West Africa to diversify into, particularly the agricultural sector,’’ he said. On the argument of Nigerians on EPA, the ambassador explained that the agreement is between the EU and ECOWAS which is the bloc. “Nigeria primarily has to make his concern heard and stood by other member states of ECOWAS but we want to clarify a few points. “It is good to hear our Nigerian partners reaffirming that they value the partnership with the EU.

Source: The Tide

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