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Publication of the Report “ACP-EU Partnership Relations after 2020: Issues for the European Union in consultation phase 1”

VJW International is pleased to announce the publication of the “ACP-EU Partnership Relations after 2020: Issues for the European Union in consultation phase 1” report, which displays the outcomes of a targeted consultation held in March 2015 in the form of seven thematic expert Round Tables on the renewal of the ACP-EU Partnership Agreement (also called Cotonou Partnership Agreement) due to expire in 2020. Veronica White from VJW International was Team Leader for this assignment awarded by the European Commission to EPRD in January 2015.

This project aimed to support the European Union in preparing negotiations for a revised Cotonou Partnership Agreement by shedding light on a series of issues, around which 7 thematic Round Tables were organised:

  • What kind of partnership do we want?
  • Future framework for international cooperation and development policy
  • Means of implementation
  • Stakeholders and institutions
  • Regional integration and trade
  • Global Challenges
  • Demographic developments

Each Round Table was co-chaired by its respective Cluster Leader and by the Team Leader, and co-hosted by EU Member States. In total, 103 participants from academia, think-tanks, the private sector, civil society organisations, EU institutions and EU Member States took part to the consultation.[/one_second]

A number of cross-cutting issues were raised at the Round Tables, such as reflecting on which shared values and mutual interests the ACP and EU should build a partnership, on how to better include the private sector and engage with a wider range of stakeholders, how to go beyond the donor-recipient relationship and leverage private flows with Official Development Assistance (ODA), and how to increase ownership of the ACP group and sustainability of the institutions. Turning towards a more interest-based partnership, inclusive of pragmatic measures regarding global and demographic challenges in a post-2015 framework, was also at the core of the discussions.

The whole report can be downloaded below:


VJW International would like to address its special thanks to the European Commission and EEAS for their support, to EPRD, to all participants and to the seven Cluster Leaders Aneta Sinachopoulou Svarna, Maaria Seppanen, Alexander O’Riordan, Sean Burke, Helmut Asche, Friedrich Barth and Yves Charbit.

What is the Cotonou Partnership Agreement (CPA)?

The CPA was signed between the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States and the EU in 2000 in Cotonou, Bénin, and is currently the most comprehensive partnership agreement between developing countries and the EU. Its main objectives are the eradication of poverty, promotion of sustainable development and gradual integration of ACP countries into the world economy. It is based around political dialogue, development cooperation and economic and trade relations and underpinned by the existence of joint institutions and a legally binding system. The CPA had been signed for a duration of 20 years and will therefore expire in 2020. Negotiations between the EU and ACP “to examine what provisions shall subsequently govern their relations” are mandated to start in August 2018.

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