ACP sugar protocol programme
Sugar protocol countries
Barbados, Belize, Republic of Congo, Fiji, Guyana, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, St. Kitts and Nevis, Suriname, Swaziland, Tanzania, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
The EU undertook to purchase and import 1.3m tonnes of sugar annually at guaranteed prices from these countries, who, in turn, committed to supply those volumes.
However, over the years other measures have been put in place, or will take effect in 2009, providing more attractive and sustainable conditions for a wider range of developing countries to supply sugar to the EU.
The sugar protocol arrangements have now been overtaken by:
- more and better market access for developing countries in the EU sugar regime reform
- more market access for the least developed countries under Everything But Arms
- market access for all ACPs (including sugar protocol countries), proposed in the EPA negotiations.
Now that the vast and profitable EU market has been opened up under EPAs, the EU has ended the sugar protocol. Developing countries that can supply sugar competitively will be able to supply the EU market far more easily than before.
The market will be opened up to the ACP countries in stages:
- 30 September 2009 - the terms of the sugar protocol will be maintained and market access under EPAs will be improved by increasing the tariff quotas
- 1 October 2009 – 30 September 2015 - free market access for the least developed countries (under Everything But Arms), subject only to an automatic EPA safeguard clause for ACPs which are not least developed countries
- 1 October 2015 - free market access for all ACP countries under EPAs, subject only to the general EPA safeguard clause.
Sugar has played a major economic, social and environmental role in many sugar protocol countries and the new EU rules pose a major challenge. Tosupport the adjustment process, the EU will be providing aid worth €1.25 billion (2006-13),on top of EDF aid. This funding will be allocated nationally, in line with the general EU development strategy for each country.
The accompanying measures encourage adaptation and restructuring by :
- making sugar cane more competitive, where viable, taking account of the situation for different stakeholders in the chain
- promoting economic diversity in sugar-dependent areas
- addressing the wider impact of the adjustment process, including employment, social services, land use and environmental restoration, the energy sector, research and innovation and macroeconomic stability.
Country-specific support strategies adopted so far: