Editor’s Corner

The East African Community (EAC) is trading ‘free’ with the European Union (EU) — without a binding agreement — following the expiry of an interim arrangement and the failure by teams negotiating from both parties to settle on a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA). The interim arrangement, entered into November 2009, was to forestall interruption of trade after the Cotonou Agreement was outlawed by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) when it came to an end in December 2007.

In the year-and-a-half since then, the EU and the EAC, together with other African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) trade blocs, have failed to agree on the way forward, with the July 31 deadline, by which an Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) was to have been in place, having come and gone.