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European Union and Challenges of Africa’s Development


European Union and Challenges of Africa’s Development.


This study examined the European Union, EU, and challenges of African development. Specifically, the study ascertained if the increasing rate of EU- African relations has increased the volume of trade between EU and Africa and secondly, ascertained if the increasing rate of EU-African relations has increased the volume of foreign direct investment from EU states to Africa.

The study interrogated the following research questions. First, has an increasing rate of EU-African relations increased the volume of trade between EU and Africa? Second, has the increasing rate of EU-African relations increased the volume of foreign direct investment (FDI) from EU states to Africa? The theory of complex interdependence was chosen as our theoretical framework.

Our choice of the theory is because of its ability to highlight cooperative actions among states and facilitate a deep understanding of global patterns of interrelationship. The study relied on secondary sources of data, and as such generated both qualitative and quantitative data. After a critical analysis of available data, the study revealed as follows: first, the increasing rate of EU-African relations has increased the volume of trade between the EU and Africa.

Second, the increasing rate of EU-African relations has increased the volume of foreign direct investment from EU states to Africa. Based on these findings, the study is of the view that Africa as a continent should deepen the rate of economic activities between her and the EU in order to attract more FDI and trade deals.

Further, Africa should cultivate, and compete for, foreign direct investment inflows to bridge their domestic saving-investment gap and therefore augment the available funds to finance the development process through bilateral investment agreements like their developing countries counterpart in other regions.



Title page——————————————————————————— i

Certification—————————————————————————— ii

Dedication——————————————————————————- iii

Acknowledgment ———————————————————————- iv

Table of Contents———————————————————————– v

List of Tables and Diagrams——————————————————— vii

List of Abbreviations——————————————————————- ix

Abstract————————————————————————————- x


  • Background to the Study——————————————————- 1
  • Statement of the Problem——————————————————– 3
  • Objectives of the Study———————————————————– 5
  • Significance of the Study——————————————————– 5
  • Literature Review—————————————————————— 6
  • Theoretical Framework———————————————————- 21
  • Hypotheses————————————————————————- 24
  • Methods of Data Collection and Analysis———————————- 24


  • History and Development of European Union—————————- 26
  • Organs and Institutions of European Union—————————— 42
  • History and Development of European Union-African Relations—— 44


  • EU Trade Policy Towards ACP Countries———————————- 54
  • EU Trade in Goods and Services in Africa———————————- 58


  • Rational for Foreign Direct Investment————————————– 68
  • Why FDI is Important to Africa———————————————- 70
  • Initiatives taken by African countries to attract FDI——————— 72
  • Incidence of FDI Inflow from EU into Africa——————————- 75


5.1      Summary and Conclusion—————————————————– 86

Bibliography——————————————————————— 89



International relations are undergoing profound change with newly emerging powers entering the scene. The European Union is itself an “emerging” foreign policy actor, hoping to reinforce its political influence in order to match its weight as global development actor (2007).

The European Union, (EU), is an international economic organization comprising some advanced countries of the north, which originally included France, West Germany, Belgium, Italy, Luxemburg and the Netherlands. It has however, to include twenty one (21), other countries namely, Austria, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and United Kingdom.

Through a conglomeration of the African, Caribbean and Pacific, (ACP), group of states which today number seventy nine, (79), (48 African, 16 Caribbean and 15 Pacific) countries are associated with the EU.

As a result of the Cold War, Europe took so much interest in the affairs of Africa coupled with the fact that most of the African countries were colonized by Major European powers and dependent on them. It is also believed that Euro-African relations arises by default. According to John (1995:95):

Africa’s dependence on Europe also arises by default, that is, from the failure of African countries to diversify to any significant degree their trading links in the three decades since most states received their independence…And Africa’s economic decline makes the continent an attractive prospect as trading partner.

Europe, preoccupied with its own problems as it moved toward the establishment of a single integrated market in 1992 and with the growing instability on its eastern borders following the disintegration of the Soviet Bloc, appeared, in the early 1990s, to have lost enthusiasm for the development compact with Africa.

Following the end of the Cold War, it seemed that the EU and its Member States were losing interest in Africa. At the level of the bilateral policies of the Member States, France, the United Kingdom, and numerous other countries in Europe cut substantially the level of their development programs (Fredrik, 2007).

In fact, John (1995:96) observed that:

Even France, long the champion of increased assistance to Africa within the European Union, seemed to be tiring of the cost of supporting its sphere of influence.

However, since international politics is shaped by the underlying global dynamics and the political context of each continent. The relationship appears to be on the resurgence. With the beginning of the new century, the collective commitment to double aid to Africa and to enhance its effectiveness has increased among members of the EU.

The 2000 Lomé Agreements – renamed Cotonou Partnership Agreement (CPA) has become the main legal framework of cooperation between the European Union and the African, Caribbean, and Pacific Group of States (ACP).

The first EU-Africa Heads of State Summit in 2000, in Cairo, recognized the need for a new high-level political relationship between the two continents and professed a new standard of multilateral cooperation that would not be based on the usual post-colonial perspectives and donor-recipient philosophy (Andrew, 2010).



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