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EPAs putting trade at the service of development

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Wednesday, 06 July 2011

EPAs putting trade at the service of development

As the interventions of the President of Uganda in South Africa early in June and recently, through the Prime Minister at the EAC in Tanzania testify that trade and freer trade is essential to economic growth. Discussions on EPAs continue, in Europe and EAC countries, among trade and development experts, parliamentarians, civil society and private sector representatives. In the debate, few civil Society Organisations have continued to maintain a critical attitude. The EU welcomes constructive criticism and open debate. However, sometimes such criticism is based on inadequate information, and or deliberate misrepresentation of facts. We need to be guided by clear principles of the WTO agreement provisions and desired development ambitions in setting out priorities that will benefit the Ugandan citizen. Past European Union-African Caribbean Pacific trade co-operation has not brought the expected results. It has neither prevented the increasing marginalisation of the ACP in world trade, nor prevented the share of the ACP in total EU imports from decreasing constantly (from 6.7 per cent in 1976 to 2.6 per cent in 2006). This is one of the main reasons why the ACP and the EU agreed jointly in the binding ACP-EU Partnership Agreement, signed in Cotonou on June 23, 2000, to completely overhaul the framework for economic and trade co-operation.

Source: Monitor.co.ug