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Tuesday, 07 May 2013

AU and EU to Strengthen Trade and Economic Links

At the 6th African Union (AU) – European Commission (EC) college-to-college meeting in Addis-Ababa, Ethiopia on 26 April, the responsible Commissioners on both sides looked at issues relating to trade, infrastructure, raw materials, good governance in taxation and regional integration. The EU and Africa will combine their efforts to try and obtain on agreement on trade facilitation and possibly other measures such as food security at the next WTO meeting in Bali.
Commissioners De Gucht (trade) stressed the important economic benefits, both for intra-African trade and for trade between Africa and the EU, that would stem from trade facilitation as well as the financial cost of the measures needed to implement it in Africa.
Regarding negotiations for Regional Economic Partnership Agreements, the EU and African countries are to intensify their political dialogue with the aim of concluding negotiations as soon as possible. On the agenda in this respect are a visit to Brussels in the near future by the AUC Vice President and representatives of the African Regional Economic Communities as well as two trips to Africa by Commissioner De Gucht.
In the field of infrastructure, Commissioner Ibrahim launched the discussion on the AU's Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa.
The follow-up actions include an AU-EU workshop on 19 June in Lusaka on the governance of common markets for Eastern and Southern Africa and an AU-EU seminar on internal market issues.

Source: All Africa

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