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Trade

Central Africa

EU trade relations with Central Africa. Facts, figures and latest developments.

Country or region
African, Caribbean, Pacific (ACP)Central Africa
Trade topics
Economic PartnershipsTrade policy

The EU and Cameroon concluded negotiations on an interim Economic Partnership Agreement in December 2007. The European Parliament approved the agreement in June 2013 and it was ratified by Cameroon in July 2014.

Central Africa countries: Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo (Brazzaville), Congo - Democratic Republic of (Kinshasa), Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, São Tomé & Principe

Trade picture

  • Oil is the main export from the Central African countries to the EU (41%). Other main regional exports are copper, wood, cocoa, bananas, and diamonds.
  • The main imports from the EU into the Central African region are machinery and mechanical appliances, equipment, vehicles, foodstuffs and pharmaceutical products.

The EU and Central Africa

The EU and Cameroon concluded negotiations on an interim Economic Partnership Agreement in 2007. The European Parliament approved the agreement in June 2013 and it was ratified by Cameroon in July 2014.

This agreement lets all goods from Cameroon enter the EU duty and quota-free, and gradually removes duties and quotas over 15 years on 80% of EU exports to Cameroon. It covers trade in goods, aid for trade, institutional issues and dispute settlement.

The interim EPA is a ‘stepping-stone’ agreement. This means the EU and partner countries can deepen the agreement through ‘rendez-vous’ clauses which allow further negotiations on trade-related issues like services, competition, intellectual property, etc.

Other countries of the region have not yet signed the Economic Partnership Agreement.

Chad, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo and São Tomé and Principe, benefit from duty-free, quota-free EU access under the EU's Everything but Arms scheme.

Congo (Brazzaville) trades with the EU under the EU's Generalised Scheme of Preferences (GSP).

As upper-middle income countries according to the World Bank classification, Gabon and Equatorial Guinea are not eligible for the GSP or any other preferential EU import regime anymore (since 2014 for Gabon and 2021 for Equatorial Guinea).

The EU and the Central African regional organisations (CEMAC and ECCAS) are studying the possibility to reach a comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement through the stepping-stone agreement already used by Cameroon.

More information on the interim Economic Partnership Agreement between the EU and the Cameroon (Other languages)

Committees and Dialogues

The EU and Central Africa meet regularly to discuss issues and best practices and oversee the proper functioning of the agreement.

Trading with Central Africa

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