Planned European Union economic agreements with developing nations could ‘undermine recent progress towards making poverty history’, senior denominational and development agency leaders believe. Saying they were ‘compelled’ to act by ‘a Biblical understanding of justice’, the group used The Times letters page to urge the Government to lead a change in EU thinking on economic partnership agreements (EPAs). Launched five years ago, the EPAs have failed to be ‘development-friendly’, the group says. Instead, they are forcing ‘free-trade agreements between very unequal partners’, the letter says. The group, which includes the UK leaders of the Methodist, United Reformed and Baptist Union churches, urges the Government to find alternatives to forcing developing countries to open their markets prematurely.
Source: The Times (27/9)