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» 18.03.2010 - Ministers to adopt strategies to fight job scarcity
» 17.03.2010 - Trade experts discuss ways to help poor countries
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Another blow for EPAs

afrol News, 12 November - It has been yet another blow for the European Union led Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) to be signed between the body and Africa. Parliamentarians of the East African Community (EAC) also want an extension of the agreements beyond the 31 December deadline.

Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi, have been working hard for the establishment of a strong trading bloc [EAC].

The enactment of the current negotiations will be done at the detriment of financing basic services: education, health and infrastructure improvement, parliamentarians voiced after exhausting a discussion on the impact of the EPAs on East Africa in the Ugandan city of Entebbe.

They believed that the extension will result to the addressing of all outstanding issues that surround the negotiations.

EAC MPs urged the exclusion of European Union's agricultural countries the negotiations. But the EU said the deal will not be extended beyond December.

EAC member governments have been called to enact laws empowering national parliaments to sanction such trade deals.

The EU has blamed Africa's economic tigers, South Africa and Nigeria, for trying to convince other African countries to shun from signing the agreements. Already, 15 West African countries have opposed the deal, arguing that it will have serious impact on the region's economic integration.

ActionAid International has grilled the EU for using what it called "strong-arm trade politics" to impose an unjust trading system on poor countries. ActionAid believed that the EU trade policy will deny the world's poorest countries of their food rights, production and undermine good governance.

Senegalese President, Abdoulaye Wade, has warned African countries to be wary of the risks involved in the consequences of free trade between Europe and Africa.

Mr Wade, who uttered the comments in France, said there is need to consider the future of Euro-African relations and warned that if the failure of Europe to transform will result to China's fast conquer.

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