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Challenges Papers (series)

The road to the 2014 Summit

Challenges for Africa-EU relations in 2013

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December 2012

Mackie, J., Rosengren, A., Roquefeuil, Q. de, Tissi, N. 2012. The road to the 2014 Summit: Challenges for Africa-EU relations in 2013. (Policy and Management Insights 4). Maastricht : ECDPM.

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At first sight, 2013 may appear to be a quiet year for Africa-EU relations. But this would ignore the fact that the next EU-Africa Summit is set for early 2014. If this major event is to be more of a success than its predecessor the agenda needs to be looked at carefully. Traditionally the Joint Africa-EU Strategy (JAES) is the centre piece of the Summit, but rather than just taking the JAES as a given, the parties should have a clear view of the strategic priorities that need to be addressed so as to ensure the agenda covers the areas most relevant to strengthening the relationship. As the year moves on, 2013 will become increasingly dominated by preparations for the Summit. Therefore, this paper’s survey of Africa-EU relations at the start of the year asks the question of what issues are likely to be key agenda points for the Fourth EU-Africa Summit.

This paper starts by briefly reviewing the changing institutional setting that will shape the Summit. It then considers two topics that will certainly be central at the Summit: revitalisation of the Joint Africa-EU Strategy (JAES) and the proposed EU Pan-African Programme. This is followed by a discussion of the financial framework for future EU support to Africa. However, there are a number of other topics of equal importance, if not more fundamental, for a revitalisation of the Africa-EU relationship. This paper goes on to consider that wider set of issues that will need to be included in the discussions at the Summit if not on the formal Summit agenda. These topics are covered in four sections: on development cooperation and beyond, on trade and regional integration, on peace and security, and finally on agriculture.

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Cross-cutting TopicsAfrica-EU RelationsChallenges Papers (series)ACP Group of StatesAgenda for ChangeCotonou AgreementEU PresidenciesEuropean External Action Service (EEAS)Joint Africa-EU Strategy (JAES)