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EU-ACP Economic Partnership Agreements: Modern Colonialism Disguised in Violation of the WTO

The Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) between the European Union and the African, Caribbean, and Pacific (ACP) nation-states are the most recent construct in a long history of developing countries’ dependency and reliance on developed European countries. Even though Preferential Trade Agreements (PTAs) are widely used by countries party to the World Trade Organization (WTO), the European Union is hiding behind illusions of non-economic trade benefits, such as increased stability and health benefits, in their EPAs with ACP countries. The European Union has the economic bargaining power, creating an upper hand in the trade negotiations with the former colonial countries and other developing countries. The EPAs, like other PTAs, consistently have provisions that should be found to violate the most-favored nation (MFN) clause. Even though GATT Article XXIV allows for PTAs, in order for the WTO to achieve one of its initiatives to liberalize world trade, the MFN clause should penetrate throughout the EU-ACP agreements.


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