COMUCAP's coordinator and founding member Marlen, 45, sitting in a pile of 'green' coffee that wil be exported to Germany. Credit: Gilvan Barreto/Oxfam
The jobs of millions of people are being put at risk.

What are EPAs?

If the new trade agreements are skewed in favor of Europe’s rich countries, then they are more likely to increase rather than reduce poverty.

Europe is pushing for new trade rules which would open up African, Caribbean and Pacific countries to competition from technologically advanced European industries and heavily subsidized European farmers.

Less advanced industries in African, Caribbean and Pacific countries will not be able to compete and new industries will not be able to develop. This will put a strain on the economies of these poor countries and the jobs and futures of millions of poor people will be put at risk.

Double standards at work

As so often with unfair trade rules, double standards are at work. Europe promised that sustainable development would be at the heart of any new trade deal.

Instead, its proposals will deny African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries the right to protect their new, future and established industries, a right that has been used over many years by rich European countries in building their developed economies.

African, Caribbean and Pacific countries would prefer trade agreements that take into account their particular development needs, but Europe is not yet listening to their concerns.

Our Trade campaign is working to ensure these new deals are fair for poor countries.