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Wednesday, 03 October 2012

Pacific officials meet with EU to progress EPA negotiations

Senior officials and trade negotiators from the Pacific ACP (PACP) States are meeting with the European Commission (EC) this week in Brussels to progress the negotiation of their Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union (EU).
The formal negotiations between the EC and the PACP States at the officials’ level takes place through the Joint Technical Working Group (JTWG) meeting, which commenced on 2 October, 2012 in Brussels. The last formal negotiation of the PACP-EU EPA was held in October 2009. The PACP States have undertaken significant preparations for the negotiations.
Over 5 days, both sides will discuss the outstanding and contentious issues. The Pacific ACP States believe that with goodwill and constructive dialogue, many of these outstanding and contentious issues can be resolved.
For many Pacific ACP States, particularly the Smaller Island States, the fisheries sector has the greatest potential to contribute to their development. The Pacific ACP States also look forward to working with the European Union to ensure that there are adequate resources to implement the EPA and to take advantage of the benefits of EPA. The PACP States stated their appreciation of EU’s financial support for the negotiation and the technical assistance provided by the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat in preparing for the negotiations.

Source: ACP Secretariat