On June 13, the European Parliament (EP) approved – with considerable reticence – the final version of the second revision of the framework agreement between the EU and the ACP (African, Caribbean and Pacific) countries (the Cotonou Agreement). They argued that the agreement is not explicit enough on the human rights, and particularly on the homosexuality chapters.
A total of 41.046 million Euro will be allocated from the European Union for the development of the banana sector in Cameroon, as part of the European Commission’s Banana Accompanying Measures (BAM) programme. The Government of Cameroon has recently signed the financing agreement with the EU at the beginning of July (2013).
2013 marks 50 years of existence of the European Investment Bank (EIB) and ten years since the creation of the EIB’s ACP Investment Facility. Since 2003, the facility has allocated funds in total value of 3,4 bn for 205 projects, out of which 85% went to SMEs. The majority of beneficiaries are from the energy sector.
Flower output has stagnated in the past four years as producers grow anxious over a weakened global economy and failure to conclude talks on trade pacts with Europe and East Africa started six years ago, the Kenya Flower Council is reported to have declared at the end of June.
The African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) sugar supplying states are appalled by the final agreement on the new EU agricultural policy (dating 26th June 2013), which stipulates the abolishment of EU beet and isoglucose sugar quotas in 2017, earlier than the initial proposal of 2020, made by the European Parliament, a common press statement released at the end of June 2013 reads.
It is unclear whether ‘aid for trade’ (AfT) projects and programmes indeed impact on poverty, a recent study shows. It comes on the heels of a fourth Global Review of Aid for Trade – an event organized by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) to offer an opportunity to donors and to developing countries to look how Aft is helping people to trade - in Geneva on 8 July.
The European Union will have a total budget of €960 billion for the next seven years (the period 2014-2020); the members of the European Parliament (MEPs) agreed on this figure at the end of June 2013, approving the deal struck by the representatives of EU member states and the European Parliament on June 19th.
Lithuania, a country of 3.2 million which joined the EU in 2004, assumes its first presidency of the Council of the European Union on 1 July. Lithuania considers itself one of the most successful countries to overcome the economic and financial crisis and to return to sustained recovery and growth. It is the first Baltic country to take the EU stint.
Most of the 3,700 fishermen who ply their trade in Croatia's eastern Adriatic fear that the country's accession to the EU on 1 July, and strict new laws and regulations that come with it, may be the end of their jobs.