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This chapter, by Jamaican scholar Norman Girvan and St Lucian academic Annita Montoute, recounts the Caribbean story of the development partnership between the African, Caribbean, and Pacific (ACP) group and the European Union (EU). They argue that, despite challenges, the Caribbean benefited from the preferential trade regime set up under the Lomé conventions (1975–2000). However, the new economic partnership agreement (EPA), mandated by Cotonou and signed in 2008, between the Forum of the Caribbean Group of ACP States (CARIFORUM) and the EU has marked a dramatic shift in the Caribbean-EU relationship, one that has had a negative impact on the relationship itself, as well as on the Caribbean’s regional integration and development prospects. Girvan and Montoute further contend that the antidote to the EPA lies in the fortification of regional integration processes that could then facilitate a strengthened re-engagement with the EU, and do so in solidarity with the ACP group. The chapter situates this analysis in the context of broader changes in the Caribbean since Lomé, which have witnessed Caribbean states build their own institutions of regional integration and forge closer ties with neighbouring Latin American countries.
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