The European Business Council for Africa




Brussels, 30 April 2021

The European Business Council for Africa and the Mediterranean (EBCAM) welcomes the new Trade Strategy communicated by the European Commission and agrees with the need for open, rules-based trade to restore growth and job creation post COVID-19 as well as the increased focus on Africa. Equally important is the emphasis on a green and digital transformation of the economy.

As representatives of the European entreprises that are actively engaged in Africa, we encourage the EU policymakers to ensure continuous and unlimited access to key resources – raw materials, goods, services, investments. EBCAM believes that more should be done to address the issue of injurious subsidization of enterprises from other states that allow their entities not to abide by international standards, as for example happens with China, Russia, Turkey and other countries.

For EBCAM members and their African private sector partners, the AfCFTA is an important step forward towards the creation of regional supply chains, which have been important drivers of economic transformation in many countries.

For the EU to be able to cooperate better with its African partners and take maximum advantage of the AfCFTA, EBCAM believes that there is a need for a new trade regime between Europe and the whole African continent. Instead of several trade agreements running in parallel and the contested Post-Cotonou agreement, a new set of agreements is needed that does justice to our African partners and aims at an FTA between the EU and the African continent.

The perspective of an African-European FTA would accelerate the process of increasing intra-African trade started by the AfCFTA and could be a direct follow-up to the AfCFTA. Such an agreement could intensify trade and investments, and create the much-needed jobs in Africa, leading to economic growth and prosperity.

Read the full position paper here.