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The European Union and the Developing Countries: The Contonou Agreement

The European Union and the Developing Countries: The Contonou Agreement

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The relationships between the European Union and developing countries in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific (or ACP countries) have been called a model for North South development cooperation. The LomA© Conventions were the embodiment of this model. After 25 years, the European Union and the ACP group signed a new partnership agreement, the Cotonou Agreement. Given the disappointing results of the former conventions, this book investigates the innovations in the EU-ACP relationship. Authors from different backgrounds (including law, political science and economics) analyze the forces that gave rise to the new agreement as well as the negotiating process of the new agreement, and the negotiations that are taking place to produce the planned Economic Partnership Agreements (EPA) that are to replace the existing non-reciprocal trade preferences that are incompatible with WTO law. The potential benefits of EPAs are discussed, as is the alternative in the shape of an improved and general preferential system. The amended mechanism for aid delivery, the increased stress on political dialogue between the partners and the introduction of more civil society participation in the cooperation are extensively analyzed and discussed. The effects of the introduction of the Euro and the effect of the planned stimuli on Direct Foreign Investment in ACP economies make this volume very complete in coverage of the ACP-EU relations. Its relevance extends far beyond the ACP-EU relationship as it shows and discusses particular solutions for problems that occur in North South relations in general.