Analytical Note, July 2005

Revisiting EPAs and WTO Compatibility.

The real objectives of the ACP-EU Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) currently under negotiation are poverty eradication; sustainable development; and the gradual integration of the ACP countries into the world economy.

Insistence on the strict WTO compatibility of EPAs might hinder the achievement of these objectives, and might lead instead to reciprocal trade arrangements that have an adverse socio-economic impact on ACP countries.

The paper proposes a three-track approach for the ACP: legal, political, and development tracks.

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