Strengthening the AU-EU partnership on the economic development and trade agenda

In this report published by the European Think Tanks Group (ETTG), Poorva Karkare looks at how African and European decision-makers can strengthen the AU-EU partnership on economic development and trade. This set of recommendations arose during a closed-door roundtable with leading African and European knowledge centres and independent experts.

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    This report is the outcome of a partnership initiative launched in 2021 by the European Think Tanks Group (ETTG) and the Africa-based Institute for Security Studies (ISS), with the support of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). Our initiative seeks to advance Africa-Europe relations in the run up to the 6th EU-AU Summit in Brussels (17-18 February 2022) and contribute to effective follow-up and implementation of the decisions taken there.

    The brief identifies some of the shared priorities between Africa and the European Union (EU) as well as challenges in their partnership as it currently stands. It also suggests concrete ways forward to strengthen the economic development and trade agenda of the AU-EU partnership. It draws heavily on discussions at a closed roundtable on 26 November 2021 of policy experts and academics aware of the agendas and high stakes on both the African and the European sides. Furthermore, it looks first at Africa’s economic development priorities and challenges, followed by areas of mutual interest with the EU and existing support measures. It then identifies some of the tensions and gaps in the partnership. These then form the basis for practical recommendations towards a more effective partnership.

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