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July 2018
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EDITO
Monday, 23 July 2018

The Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between the European Union (EU) and six Southern African countries has been a boost for the Western Cape, with strong gains for the wine and fishing industries since it came into effect in October 2016. The EPA between the EU and the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) member countries – South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland – plus Mozambique, allows increased market access for exports. More than half of South Africa’s fish exports are destined for the EU, with a growth rate of more than 50% since 2013, said the SADC-EU EPA Outreach Initiative.

Ghana's large food import bill presently amounts to two million dollars a year, a development which will affect the country's economy without a quick change in policy. The Netherlands Ambassador to Ghana, Mr. Ron striker who said this in Accra, yesterday, observed that Ghana, mainly imports products like rice, sugar, frozen chicken and oil which could be easily produced in the country. Mr. Striker who was speaking at the launch of the first Value Added Agriculture Expo in West Africa, slated for August 2 to 4 in Ghana, said boosting agriculture was essential to attaining the president's vision of 'Ghana beyond Aid'.

A European Union (EU) push to increase the number of goods entering the East African Community (EAC) without paying duty has delayed the signing of a trade pact between the two blocs. The standoff has seen only two out of five states endorse the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) under special arrangement with the EU to continue accessing the duty-free market. If the EAC bows to pressure, the move will mean that 17.5 per cent of goods from Europe that have been blocked from accessing the bloc duty-free allowed entry.

A senior Bahamian private sector official says he hopes local companies will together with their counterparts from Jamaica and Belize, be more aware of the opportunities offered by the Caribbean Forum (CARIFORUM)-European Union (EU) Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA). The accord, which was signed in 2008, replaces the trade component of Lomé IV and its successor, Cotonou Agreement in 2000.

Monday, 19 March 2018

The secondary effect of the common agricultural policy (CAP) on African agriculture is a source of concern for MEPs. In recent years exports of powdered milk have soared, threatening the African dairy sector. If Europeans farmers profit from the policy set up by the EU, the collateral damages in developing countries can sometimes be quite significant.

During the last eleven months, Cameroon’s exports of sawn wood to the European Union have decreased by 21% to stand at 293,800 m3. This is revealed by a sectoral report of the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO). Cameroon is not the only country whose exports of sawn wood to the EU have decreased. The exports of all the 10 largest sawn wood suppliers, Cameroon included, have also decreased.

The Ministry of Food and Agriculture has urged exporters of agricultural produce to comply with all regulations and support the Ministry to meet its target of creating jobs through food production. The Ministry would continue to work with the European Union Vegetable Taskforce to help coordinate affairs of compliance and meeting EU phytosanitary regulations. Some of the measures include establishing the Green Label Certification system to add value to Ghanaian produce for export, and tightening inspection of horticulture produce submitted for exports at various ports

The European Investment Bank (EIB) has extended US$29.6million (€24million) loan to two local banks for financing small and medium sized firms in Rwanda. The bank signed the US$19million loan with the Development Bank of Rwanda and another one with I&M Bank of Rwanda at US$10milllion. In addition, the bank also signed a US$55.4million (€45million) long term loan with the Rwandan government to finance sewage and waste water projects in the capital Kigali.

Trademark East Africa (TMEA) has launched the process of setting up a logistics centre in Gulu town to facilitate trade between Uganda, Democratic Republic of Congo and South Sudan. Speaking to journalists at their offices in Kampala this morning, TMEA country director Moses Sabiiti said the organization has already secured $8m (Shs 28.8bn) from United Kingdom’s Department for Foreign Aid (DFID) and European Union for the world-class facility.

Caribbean Export is now taking applications from Caribbean women-owned businesses to participate in their newest programme: Women Empowered through Export or WE-Xport. At the Hilton Barbados Resort, Caribbean Export in cooperation with the European Union announced the commencement of the WE-Xport programme which aims to support Caribbean women in business to grow their businesses through assisting in their development to either start exporting or increase their exports, namely to the European Union, utilising the benefits of the CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement.