|EDITORIAL: "EVERYBODY IS GETTING TOGETHER, WHY NOT AFRICA?"|
|Publications - African Agenda|
|Written by Editorial|
|Thursday, 20 August 2009 17:18|
From Europe, through South Eastern Asia, to Latin America the need for integration of various economies and countries is gaining momentum, more so in this global economic recession. Indeed various UNCTAD reports especially those of 2007, 2008 and 2009 have urged greater integration as the solution to development challenges particularly in developing countries. (see page 11, Africa needs deeper regional integration in response to global crisis.)
The European Union, for instance in response to the crisis called for common strategies that ‘promote European principles and long-term goals’ and the need to align economic policies in order to strengthen the single market. The aim is to ensure that, ‘Europe can emerge stronger and better prepared for the future’.
In Central America, the System of Central American Integration, SICA, made up of Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Costa Rica, mindful of the losses they were going to suffer as a result of the crisis, called for increased trade within Central America and hence ‘vital integration mechanisms like the Central American Customs Union’ should be established as soon as possible.
The economic stimulus plan of the US is seen by some as a means of ‘protecting’ the huge ‘continental’ American market from foreign business in a way ensuring that the US market becomes much more integrated. It is thus clear to all that regional integration offers a way out of development challenges for both developing and developed countries. It is therefore tragic that the European Union in signing its Economic Partnership Agreement, EPA, between it and the countries of Africa, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) configuration seeks to undermine regional integration. In spite of all assurances of the European Union that the EPA will lead to the strengthening of Africa’s integration, the reality is that it is leading to divisions within the ranks of regional economic blocs seen as building blocks for Africa’s integration.
|Last Updated ( Thursday, 20 August 2009 17:33 )|
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