As global rules are renegotiated, Africa may get left behind again
Only seven heads of state turned up for the summit of African, Caribbean and Pacific states in Maputo on 23-24 June. Africa looks set to lose the secretary general's post, held since 1999 by Jean-Robert Goulongana of Gabon, to a candidate from the Pacific. Worse, the only country that offered to host the next summit was Sudan, whose ethnic cleansing in Darfur is eroding the diplomatic benefits of its southern peace deal (AC Vol 45 No 13). ACP members are reluctant to surrender the preferential trade regimes extended to them under the 'Lomé arrangements', originally designed for Europe's former colonies. The new fashion, however, is for world-wide deals not regional ones.
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