ACP-EU JPA resolution on sugar
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CTA. 2003. ACP-EU JPA resolution on sugar. Agritrade, June 2003. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/52534
The ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly meeting in Brazzaville...
The ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly meeting in Brazzaville adopted a resolution on sugar calling on the EU to: ensure that internal CAP reforms and the EU's wider trade liberalisation do not adversely impact on the small and vulnerable economies of the ACP sugar-supplying states; recognise the significant and vital contribution that predictable and stable earnings derived from sugar exports have made to economic development, poverty alleviation and the promotion and maintenance of social and political stability; acknowledge the multifunctional nature of the sugar industry, particularly its role in environmental protection and rural development in ACP sugar supplying states as well as in ensuring food security'. It also called on the EU to 'take, in conjunction with the ACP group of states, all necessary measures to defend the sugar regime and the terms and conditions of ACP preferential access against the challenge of Australia and Brazil'. It furthermore called on the EU to 'honour their commitments under the Sugar Protocol, irrespective of the outcome of the challenge'. It requested the European Commission to 'consult the ACP sugar-supplying states on the findings of the studies on the mid-term review of the EC sugar regime before proposals are made with a view to ensuring that the impact of any review on the ACP states concerned is taken into account' and to 'provide for the necessary mechanism to guarantee at least the same level of earnings to the ACP sugar supplying states as the EU sugar producers.' These views were endorsed by ACP ministers at their meeting in May 2003. Comment: The call for consultations with ACP sugar-supplying states on the mid-term review is crucial. A number of ACP states have new sugar developments planned, the economic viability of which will be critically determined by the future of sugar prices on the EU market. Before these investments are made it is vital that the ACP have a clear understanding of the likely direction and impact of reform of the EU sugar regime. If these consultations do not take place the possibility exists that large-scale investments will have taken place whose prospects is bleak. This could leave a number of ACP governments with large non-performing loans and throw their economies into severe crisis (Swaziland is a case in point). In this context open discussions of the implications for ACP sugar suppliers of likely scenarios for sugar-sector reform would appear to be an urgent priority.