The Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Bulelani Magwanishe, is in Brussels, Belgium, to participate in the 21st Ministerial Trade Committee meeting of African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries.
The ACP Ministers of Trade meeting is an annual gathering that promotes the exchange of views on issues that affect trade and investment in ACP countries.
The meeting, which runs from today until Thursday, will discuss the Brexit process, the implementation of the Economic Partnership Agreement, as well as the World Trade Organisation post the 11th WTO Ministerial Conference convened in December 2017.
The Southern African Customs Union and the UK are engaged in a discussion towards a roll-over agreement based on the Economic Partnership Agreement, which aims to ensure that there is no disruption in trade once the UK leaves the EU.
“The meeting will also discuss the approach to the Post-Cotonou Agreement in relation to trade, investment and industrialisation. The principal objective of the Post-Cotonou Agreement would be to contribute to the attainment of sustainable development in all ACP countries, in line with the provisions of Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” the dti said on Wednesday.
Magwanishe will also participate in the 16th Joint ACP and European Union Ministerial Trade Committee (JMTC) to be held on Friday.
The discussions at the joint meeting with the European Union would also include consideration of the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the ACP-Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs), as well as other pertinent issues arising from the current ACP-EU trade relations.
The JMTC is a high-level political forum that meets at least once a year with the aim of strengthening the ACP-EU partnership.
It was established based on Article 38 of the Cotonou Agreement and was mandated to address and resolve ACP-EU trade-related issues of concern or interest for the parties and to monitor the EPAs. - SAnews.gov.za