Dominican Republic and West Africa lead way in growth in ACP Mango exports to the EU

 

Summary
ACP exports of mangoes to the EU have grown strongly, particularly since 2007, with further growth in EU consumer demand likely. While tariffs are not an issue in the mango sector, new trade agreements do appear to have boosted investment and facilitated expanded exports in both ACP and non-ACP countries in response to rising EU demand. Brexit is unlikely to pose any challenges for direct ACP mango exports to the UK, but could lead to problems if the absence of a UK-EU27 agreement, spills over into reduced cooperation on SPS and freight forwarding arrangements.  This is important in the mango sector given the role the Netherlands plays in the re-export trade across the EU, including to the UK. This issue needs to be closely monitored by those ACP exporters which are most likely to be affected. Read more “Dominican Republic and West Africa lead way in growth in ACP Mango exports to the EU”

Agriculture to be a Focus of the Renewed Africa-EU Partnership

Summary
Supporting African agro-food sector development given its employment, food security and rural development effects is nominally a focus of the proposed renewed Africa-EU partnership. However differences of opinion over what constitutes an appropriate ‘regulatory and policy framework’ for African agro-food sector development, alongside unacknowledged tensions between EU agro-food sector export objectives and African agro-food sector development aspirations, could pose serious challenges for a renewed Africa-EU partnership in this area.  Read more “Agriculture to be a Focus of the Renewed Africa-EU Partnership”

Surges in onion exports to Mauritania could close off longer term opportunities for Dutch exports

 

Summary
In a context where West Africa is the major destination for extra-EU Dutch onion exports, surges of Dutch onion exports to Mauritania are severely depressing local onion prices. This is in part linked to the closure of the Russian market. This could provoke trade restrictions in Mauritania in an effort to protect local onion producers. Any moves to restrict onion imports into Mauritania would need to be closely linked to targeted efforts to strengthen the functioning of local onion supply chains. Experience elsewhere in Africa, in a country facing similar environmental conditions, namely Namibia, could hold important lessons for Mauritanian onion sector trade policy. Read more “Surges in onion exports to Mauritania could close off longer term opportunities for Dutch exports”

ACP Citrus Exporters and Brexit: Part 2, The Case of Smaller Scale Exporters

Summary
In the short term smaller ACP citrus exporters could benefit from Brexit in their trade with the UK if they can:

  1. retain existing duty free-quota free access to the UK market from the date of the UK’s departure from the EU;
  2. secure the removal of CBS controls in trade with the UK;
  3. ensure the issue of the disproportionate costs of SPS inspections for small scale ACP exporters under moves to full costs recovery is addressed

However this will still leave the threat posed the dismantling of all tariff protection in the citrus sector, where the UK has no domestic production.  This however may be deferred if it only takes place in the context of UK FTA negotiations with non-ACP exporters of citrus fruit. Read more “ACP Citrus Exporters and Brexit: Part 2, The Case of Smaller Scale Exporters”

ACP citrus exporters and Brexit: Part 1 The Case of South Africa

 

Summary
For South Africa both challenges and opportunities arise in the citrus sector as a result of the Brexit process. The first challenge, in common with other ACP citrus exporters, is to retain existing preferential access to the UK market. South Africa could also benefit from the dismantling of strict CBS controls on exports to the UK. Unlike other ACP citrus exporters, South Africa could also gain some marginal benefits from the immediate removal of current seasonal tariffs on its citrus exports. However, securing these benefits will be dependent on the UK pursuing a ‘hard Brexit, which may now be less likely following the UK June 2017 election result. In addition, if no new trade arrangement is set in place between the UK and EU27 from 30th March 2019 and MFN duties are imposed on mutual trade, South Africa could see new market opportunities emerge in the citrus sector in trade with the UK, given Spain’s current role as the dominant supplier to the UK. These opportunities however will exist only on the fringes of the existing season. Read more “ACP citrus exporters and Brexit: Part 1 The Case of South Africa”

Gambia Withdraws Import Ban on Onions and Potatoes

 

Summary
The government of Gambia has lifted a ban on imports of onions and potatoes, with female onion producers criticising the move and calling for seasonal restrictions and greater support for local producers. Experience in Senegal suggests there may be a role for seasonal restrictions in stimulating investment in local production. Experience in Namibia meanwhile highlights how successful the use of trade policy measures can be in stimulating local production, if the necessary infrastructure, organisational and administrative capacities are already in place. Read more “Gambia Withdraws Import Ban on Onions and Potatoes”

Nigerian government adopts trade measures against tomato imports

Summary
The Nigerian government has announced new trade measures in support of the local tomato sector. However such measures would be likely to fall foul of the provisions of the EU-West Africa economic partnership agreement related to tariff standstill commitments and the ‘prohibition of quantitative restrictions’. Beyond these EPA related policy complications, trade policy tools can only be effective in supporting agricultural development if they are deployed as an integral part of wider government programmes aimed at comprehensively addressing infrastructural, policy and logistical constraints on the efficient functioning of local agri-food sector supply chains.
Read more “Nigerian government adopts trade measures against tomato imports”

New scheduled air serives open up opportunities for expanded Ghanaian fresh fruit exports to EU

 

Summary
New scheduled airline services between Accra and Paris could open up new opportunities for high value horticultural exports from Ghana to France. However sustainable development of such opportunities will be critically influenced by the competitiveness of freight rates offered.  Given the history of price collusion among scheduled airline on European freight service routes, this is an area where the European Commission will need to maintain close scrutiny. Read more “New scheduled air serives open up opportunities for expanded Ghanaian fresh fruit exports to EU”

The Belize potato market crisis: Sharing policy experience on sustaining local production in small ACP economies

Summary
The current crisis in the Belize potato sector is a problem common in many small ACP economies, where efforts are made to sustain and develop local horticulture production in the context of competing production from much larger neighbouring economies. A sharing of policy experience on how to effectively manage imports, so as to leave market space for local production  could usefully be shared across ACP countries. Namibia’s horticultural sector policy experience which has successfully used public policy tools to strengthen the functioning of local horticulture supply chains would appear to be particularly relevant for the Belize potato sector and beyond (with this horticulture  experience now being rolled out across all sectors of the Namibian economy via a Retail Sector Charter)
Read more “The Belize potato market crisis: Sharing policy experience on sustaining local production in small ACP economies”

Reconciling Ghana’s agricultural development plans with EPA commitments

Summary
The government of Ghana is looking to create 1.5 million new jobs in agriculture in the next 2 years. Calls have been made to direct bank financing into agricultural investments. Yet systemic weaknesses beyond the agricultural sector need to be addressed if sourcing of local agricultural products is to increase. Policy interventions may also be needed to strengthen the functioning of local agricultural supply chains, with policy experiences elsewhere in Africa potentially holding important lessons. Read more “Reconciling Ghana’s agricultural development plans with EPA commitments”