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GTAP Resource #2064

"Effects of Bilateral Trade Agreements on the Multilateral Trading Arena: special consideration of EPA between EU and ACP countries"
by Hailu, Martha

To substitute the trade preferences granted to ACP countries by the EU, which are scheduled to be phased out in 2008, the EU and ACP countries are negotiating Economic Partnership Agreements. Regarded as vehicles to promote development, there are basically four key principles up on which the partnership agreements are established: WTO compatibility, SDT as well as flexibility for ACP states, maintaining the acquis of Lome’ Conventions and preserving sub regional and regional integration processes. The EPAs are to be negotiated between the EU and the regional trading blocks of the ACP countries and will take the form of free trade areas.

The issues that are to be addressed in the EPA negotiations are, among other things, trade in goods, liberalization of the service sector and trade related issues such as competition policy, investment, trade and environment, government procurement as well as trade and labor standards. Some of these issues, the ones known as “Singapore Issues”, have been put on the table at the multilateral trading negotiations at the WTO and due to lack of consensus, were dropped from the Doha work program. The introduction of these issues to EPA negotiations amounts to bringing dead issues in to life again and hence, need careful consideration as it may lead to a WTO plus commitment.

This paper discusses some concepts as well as legal issues related to the economic partnership agreements between the EU and ACP countries. The paper is divided in to three main sections. The first section will deal with the principles of world trading system and GATT Article XXIV exception. Section II focuses on the trade relationship that existed between the EU and ACP countries, and examines the different issues underpinned in EPAs. Section three, which is the last section, will try to see the implication of EPAs on the multilateral trading arena.

Resource Details (Export Citation) GTAP Keywords
Category: 2006 Conference Paper
Status: Published
By/In: Presented at the 9th Annual Conference on Global Economic Analysis, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Date: 2006
Created: Hailu, M. (5/1/2006)
Updated: Hailu, M. (5/1/2006)
Visits: 2,564
No keywords have been specified.

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