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EU trade schemes “promote economic development and human rights”

Jan 19, 2018 | News

(19 January 2018) – The report published today jointly by the European Commission and the European External Action Service shows supposedly positive impact of the European Union’s duty-rebate schemes on developing economies.


Since the reformed EU initiative known as Generalised Scheme of Preferences (GSP) entered into force in 2014, exports from countries to the EU benefitting from these tariff cuts rose by nearly a quarter to a yearly amount of €63 billion. Least developed countries benefited the most: their exports to the EU increased by nearly 40% and reached €23.5 billion in 2016.

In addition to the economic benefits of the scheme, today’s report points out the progress made on issues such as women’s empowerment, child and forced labour, torture, illegal drugs trafficking and climate change.

A separate document accompanying today’s report provides a detailed overview of progress and remaining shortcomings, specifically in the countries participating in the Special Incentive Arrangement for Sustainable Development and Good Governance, known as GSP+.

The report also shows an increased involvement of civil society in the monitoring of the scheme: 16 civil society dialogues took place in 2016 and 2017; the one dedicated to preparation of the present report involved 20 non-governmental organisations.

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