The Caribbean, the EU, and the WTO: The political economy of marginalization.
In: Benjamin Labarthe, E. and Dubesset, E., eds.
Émancipations caribeennes: Histoire, mémoire, enjeux socio-économiques et politiques.
Paris: l’Harmattan, pp. 309-320.
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Publisher's URL: http://www.editions-harmattan.fr/index.asp?navig=c...
The paper evaluates the changes that have taken place in the political economy of global trade, particularly the growing influence of international organisations (such as the European Union and World Trade Organisation) and their rules and norms, and the political and economic marginalisation of the Commonwealth Caribbean that has resulted. First, the paper considers briefly the EU-Caribbean relationship under the Lomé Convention, and the dynamics of one of the last successful trade negotiations undertaken by the Caribbean (the agreement on a single European banana market in 1993). Since then the global trading climate has altered dramatically with negative consequences for the Caribbean’s economy. The paper evaluates events in the banana sector which have highlighted attention on the influential role of the WTO. The final section of the paper evaluates how the EU took its lead from the WTO in designing the recently agreed Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the Caribbean. The EPA establishes a largely reciprocal free trade agreement which replaces the non-reciprocal trade preferences of Lomé. The paper evaluates the provisions of the EPA, particularly those for the trade in goods and the trade in services. It argues that the Caribbean’s interests have been marginalised in recent years due to new rules governing global trade and the altered geo-strategic priorities of the EU.
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