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Regional Trade

Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

September 2018
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Monday, 24 September 2018

Britain's vote to leave the European Union is raising concern among Pacific nations, which include a number of former British colonies, about the outlook for some of their major exports. EU trade preferences prop up the price of Fijian sugar and permit duty-free imports of other Pacific agricultural goods, including palm oil, coffee, coconuts, and fish and caviar. Pacific shipments to the EU amounted to 1.3 billion euros ($1.43 billion) last year and are particularly important to the region's larger economies. The U.K. is Fiji's second largest merchandise export market, after Australia, and EU shipments account for close to 6% of Papua New Guinea's gross domestic product.

International Flavors & Fragrances Inc. (IFF) and Unilever announced a new partnership with leading non-governmental organizations to enhance the livelihoods of smallholder vetiver farmers in Haiti. The partnership, Vetiver Together, aims to sustainably improve food security, increase yields, and diversify income, while working to support women’s empowerment and environmental conservation. Let's reclall that Vetiver oil is a common ingredient in many fragrances and an important crop for Unilever, found in brands such as Axe and Impulse. Haiti produces some of the best vetiver in the world, and many farmers rely on cultivation of the root for their entire source of income.

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

The European Union-CARIFORUM Economic Partnership Agreement is not only aimed at increasing CARIFORUM member states’ access to the European market, but trade among themselves. In that respect, Silvia Kofler, the Minister Counselor, Political, Trade, Press and Information within the European Union Delegation to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, said in terms of intraregional trade there is still a lot of work to be done.

Friday, 17 June 2016

Caribbean countries have a living bank of marine resources from which they collectively cash out hundreds of millions of dollars a year to support emerging national economies by providing good jobs, food and foreign exchange, among other benefits. However, in order to remain active and competitive in the global marketplace, countries have had to find ways to surmount the challenges posed by stringent international standards called sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures, for food safety and for protection against diseases carried animals and plants. Under an EU-funded SPS Measures Project, the ability of Caribbean countries to effectively address those challenges is being strengthened through initiatives such as specialized training for those gatekeepers who help to ensure the safety of both imported and exported foods. The project has reached a new milestone, as a group of professionals from CARIFORUM states -- the countries which make up the Caribbean Community, as well as the Dominican Republic -- has just concluded a sanitary and phytosanitary management course. The intensive two-week training, held at the United Nations University – Fisheries Training Programme (UNU-FTP) in Reykjavik, Iceland, was organized under the capacity building component of the project.

Source: caribbeannewsnow.com

Tuesday, 03 May 2016

The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) and the European Union (EU) have begun an initiative to establish a code of practice for Nigerian Agricultural products for exportation. The information is contained in a statement jointly signed by Mrs Chinyere Egwuonwu, Deputy Director, Standards Directorate, SON, and Mrs Irina Kireeva of EU. The statement said that as part of efforts to achieve the goal, the organisations had concluded plans for a final national training on standards on code of practices for the products.

Thursday, 21 April 2016

This report examines various interactions between trade policy, with a specific focus on market access conditions, and factors that constitute the basis for achieving sustainable development. Market access conditions vis-avis imports are determined by a combination of border measures and behind the border measures, both of which add costs to the price of an imported product. By generating significant impact upon consumer welfare and the competitiveness of domestic industries, market access conditions in international trade thus are a key determinant of the effectiveness of trade as a means of implementation.

Friday, 15 April 2016

Leading banana and pineapple exporting company in West Africa, Golden Exotic Limited (GEL), has warned that Ghana risks losing millions of euros as government delays in ratifying the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) signed with the European Union (EU) before it expires on October 1, 2016. In December 2007, Ghana initialled an interim EPA to avoid a similar tariff action after the preferential trade agreement enjoyed under a previous treaty, named the Cotonou Accord expired in the year 2000.

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Orange Telecom has announced a €75 million investment in a Nigerian e-commerce company, Africa Internet Group (AIG). AIG owns several internet start-ups in the country and beyond. Through the investment, Orange, which has a common presence with AIG in 12 African countries, joins MTN, Millicom, Rocket Internet, AXA and Goldman Sachs in becoming a shareholder in AIG which owns a number of technology firms across 23 African countries. Orange said that it will help online retailer, Jumia, and other websites run by the company to accelerate growth and seize development opportunities in the region.

Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Ugandan small and medium-sized companies in the food value chain have received a boost from the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa) through the training of 80 firms. The trained food distributors are expected to start providing products that meet international sanitary and phytosanitary standards. Ugandan companies will now be able to sell their food to supermarkets, hotels, as well as regional and international markets. Comesa Business Council CEO Sandra Uwera said increasing the number of agricultural products sold in regional markets will boost Uganda's share of intra-Comesa trade and improve the country's balance of trade.

The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) intends to implement a new strategy aimed at driving Africa's industrialization and increasing intra-Africa trade by at least 50 percent in the next five years, the bank said on Wednesday. The Afreximbank Intra-African Trade Strategy will see the bank work with partners to ramp up trade among African countries to 250 billion U.S. dollars by 2021 from its current level of 170 billion dollars. "Intra-regional trade will drive value addition in Africa and help reduce the continent's dependence on commodities.