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Thursday, May 17, 2007

Pacific ACP Trade Ministers kick start two-day meeting today in Nadi, to consider EPA related issues

Pacific ACP Trade Ministers have begun a two day meeting in Nadi, Fiji today to consider issues relating to the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) being negotiated with the European Union.

“The negotiations of the EPA have reached a critical stage with the deadline looming to conclude the process. There are a number of important issues that the Ministers need to consider and reach a common regional position,” Peter Forau, Forum Deputy Secretary General said.

The meeting will consider issues including:
- EPA negotiations since November 2006;
- EPA Development Needs and Adjustment Costs for PACPS;
- EPA Adjustment Facility; and
- EPA related studies including one on the potential benefits of the proposed Multilateral Fisheries Partnership Agreement; and a Clean Development Mechanism.

The Trade Ministers will also discuss the Pacific Island Trade Agreement (PICTA), get an update on World Trade Organization issues and consider the position of Chief Trade Negotiator for the Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations (PACER) negotiations with Australia and New Zealand.

The meeting will consider the way forward on the EPA negotiations including a Regional Negotiating Machinery, its Work Programme and Budget under the Pacific Regional Integration Programme (PACREIP).

Source: PIFS

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