Trade Barriers Between European Union and East African Countries

John Yabs, James Yabs


Negotiations on Trade and investment between European Union (EU) and East African (EAC) Countries has been going on since the Lomé Conventions between 1975 and 2000.  Initiatives  to reduce certain trade and investment barriers have been going on between the two parties after the Cotonou Convention of 2000. This later resulted in Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) that has been going on since 2008.  Despite these continuous negotiations, there still remain substantial trade and investment barriers instituted by both EU and EAC countries. Efforts to reduce these trade and investment barriers are still continuing because of realization that reduction of these artificial barriers will be good for everyone. This study was conducted between 2010 and 2015 with two objectives in mind: one, was to determine the barriers that are still in place despite many years of negotiations to reduce them; and two, to find out how these trade and investment barriers could be reduced if not eliminated altogether. The results of the study indicated that individual EAC countries are in different stages in signing and ratifying EPA Agreement. It was also clear that negotiations between the two parties will in the near future produce the desired results.

Key words: trade and investment barriers; investment relationships; reduction of barriers; negotiating forum.

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