One of the main lessons of the global economic crisis that has cast its shadow since 2008 is that this is the time to be diversifying trade away from over-reliance on EU markets. It is clear to all observers that the economic chaos engulfing the EU in its euro-zone heartlands shows no end in sight and the prospect of long- term stagnation is becoming ever more real.
Whose interest does the ten-year Strategy document for Africa actually serve? The World Bank has shown little insight into the real problems Africa faces, focusing instead on ineffective policies, support for repressive regimes and projects that are known to have failed.
The language contained in agreements being negotiated by the EU through the WTO with their southern counterparts often deliberately diguises real political goals, obscuring the negative economic implications for those countries of the neoliberal agenda.
The challenges facing policy makers, analysts and activists dedicated to formulating environmentally sound, social and economically sound trade policies demand that we redefine the role and purpose of trade altogether.
This paper highlights the negative effects of liberalisation of trade and investment within weaker economies and, in particular, how EU trade agreements undermine existing efforts towards developmental integration in ACP regions.