REMOVING BORDERS: CSME AND THE EPA
WHAT IS THE EPA?
The Economic Partnership Agreement, commonly referred to as the EPA, is a partnership between the European Union and the CARIFORUM side of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) grouping. The purpose of the agreement is to create an open market for inter-regional and intra-regional trade in goods and services, and to also allow commercial access for businesses.
WHAT COUNTRIES ARE SIGNATORY TO THE PARTNERSHIP?
- Antigua and Barbuda
- St. Lucia
- St. Vincent and the Grenadines
- Dominican Republic
- St. Kitts and Nevis
- Trinidad and Tobago
WHAT AREAS DO THE EPA ENCOMPASS?
The EPA operates on a number of pillars:
- The first focus speaks to Development Cooperation and seeks to promote increased and sustained economic growth.
- The second Trade Dimension seeks to improve trade between countries, public-private partnerships and encourage overall reduced prices to improve competitiveness.
- The third area encompasses the Political aspects, which aims to increase dialogue through civil society, state, and non-state actors.
- The fourth aspect looks at the promotion of Sustainable Development, and
- The fifth aspect promotes Regional Integration.
WHO DOES IT INTEND TO BENEFIT?
The main beneficiaries to the EPA are listed below:
- Caribbean Businesses
- Caribbean Governments
- Public Sector
- Private Sector
- Civil Society