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Thursday, 08 September 2016

EU–West Africa: provisional application for EPA

The EU has initialled an Economic Partnership Agreement with 16 West African states, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU). Negotiations of "stepping stone Economic Partnership Agreements" with Ghana and Ivory Coast were concluded in 2007. Following ratification by the Ivorian Parliament and the European Parliament, the stepping stone Economic Partnership Agreement between Ivory Coast and the EU entered into provisional application on 3 September 2016. The Economic Partnership Agreement with West Africa covers goods and development cooperation. The EPA also included the possibility to hold further negotiations on sustainable development, services, investment and other trade-related issues in the future. The EPA will help West Africa to integrate better into the global trading system and will support investment and economic growth in the region. For West Africa, the EPA will increase exports to the EU, stimulate investment and contribute to developing productive capacity, with a positive effect on employment. The EPA will support necessary reforms and promote economic and social development. Its implementation will strengthen regional integration. For the EU, it opens new business opportunities and increases legal certainty for European investors in the region. It gives both partners practical tools for solving any potential problem and stepping up trade cooperation.

Source: ec.europa.eu