EPA: ‘EU NEEDS TO SPECIFY THE VOLUME OF DEVELOPMENT FINANCE’

Filed in News by on November 13, 2010

EPA: ‘EU needs to specify the volume of development finance’
Saturday, 13 November 2010

Sunday Williams

The European Union needs to spell out the sources and the volume of money it is providing for the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) development programme, the President of National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS, Ken Ukaoha has said.

The African heads of states and governments and the parliaments had unanimously directed that the region may not sign any EPA except the EU commits to finance West Africa’s Development programme to take care of the possible impacts of the agreements on their economies.

Speaking in Abuja at a stakeholder’s review of EU-ECOWAS EPA negotiations, the NANTS President said that the clarification became necessary with regards to the difference between 9.5 billion Euro presented by ECOWAS and the 6.5 billion Euro accepted by the EU in the financing.

He said that while the EU has eventually accepted to help finance West Africa’s EPA development programme, a considerable number of differences needs to be settled.

“I should note particularly, that while differences have been resolved on some issues, for instance the EU acceptance to help finance West Africa’s EPA development programme,the parties are yet to reach an agreement on the sources and volume of such financing,” he said.

He said that it is widely recognized that if substantial progress is to be made and negotiations concluded soon, there will be a need for greater flexibility from the EU as regards most issues.

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