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The EU’s insistence on reciprocal trade with the ACP group. Economic interests in the driving seat?

Faber, Gerrit, and Orbie, Jan. (2007) The EU’s insistence on reciprocal trade with the ACP group. Economic interests in the driving seat? In: UNSPECIFIED, Montreal, Canada. (Unpublished)

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    This paper looks at the transformation of the European Union’s trade relationship with the ACP group. It starts from the observation that the EU has forcefully argued for reciprocal free trade during the negotiations on the EU-ACP Cotonou Agreement (1995-2000) and the Economic Partnership Agreements with six ACP regions (from 2002). Then the hypothesis is raised that Europe's quest for reciprocity, despite resistance from ACP countries and some European actors, can be explained by EU economic interests. Testing this hypothesis, the next section examines Europe’s economic interests in terms of export opportunities to and energy dependence from the ACP countries. The analysis shows that Europe's strong insistence on reciprocity is disproportionate to the economic significance of these countries for the EU. Finally, the paper elaborates on alternative explanations for the Union’s position. Although compatibility with the rules of the World Trade Organization provides a superficial explanation for the EU’s drive for reciprocity, it is argued that this is more fundamentally driven by Europe's economic interests with non-ACP countries and by its ideological belief in free trade as an alternative to old recipes.

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    Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
    Uncontrolled Keywords: EU-African, Caribbean, Pacific (ACP).
    Subjects for non-EU documents: EU policies and themes > External relations > EU-ACP
    Other international institutions > GATT/WTO
    EU policies and themes > External relations > international trade
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Conference: European Union Studies Association (EUSA) > Biennial Conference > 2007 (10th), May 17-19, 2007
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 15 Jun 2008
    Page Range: p. 22
    Last Modified: 15 Feb 2011 17:51

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