SHELDON ALI 806000150 ITLP 6000
1.0 What is the Regional Partnership Agreement?
The Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) is a comprehensive trade agreement between the European Union (EU) and the Caricom nations and the Dominican Republic (CARIFORUM) designed to facilitate and develop trade and investment to enhance economic growth, especially for the Caribbean. It replaced the LomÃÂ© IV Agreement (1992) and more recently the Cotonou Agreement (2000). It encompasses both the Pillars of Trade (Lome IV) & the Obligation of Reciprocity (Cotonou Agreement).
The CARIFORUM -EU EPA was signed on the 15th October 2008 in Bridgetown Barbados, bringing to a close three (3) years of negotiations. Implementation is in progress, and is being rolled out on a provisional basis (phased opening of markets over a period of time). After a three (3) year moratorium, phased reduction of tariffs by CARIFORUM began. The gradual tariff reduction scheme is scheduled to continue over a twenty five year period to 2033.
Status of the agreements between the EU and the other blocs varies from signed agreements to partially signed and signatures still pending. (European Commission, 2014)
The trade agreement was made between the European Union (EU) consisting of twenty seven (27) member countries and CARIFORUM countries consisting of fifteen (15) member CARICOM states plus the Dominican Republic. Refer to the table below for the listing of member nations (European Commission, 2014)
Table 1 Showing members of The EU-CARIFORUM EPA (European Commission, 2014)
EU Countries (27) Member countries
CARIFORUM (15) Member countries
Belgium, Czech Republic , Denmark ,Germany, Estonia, Greece, France , Ireland, Italy, Cyprus , Latvia, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Hungary , Malta, Netherlands , Austria, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia , Slovakia, Finland, Sweden, United Kingdom, Northern Ireland , Bulgaria, Romania.
Antigua and Barbuda , Bahamas , Barbados ,Belize , Dominica , Dominican Republic , Grenada ,