Cotton Agreements Secured Feb04
This week, Bashir
Khanbhai MEP, Conservative ACP Spokesman in the European Parliament, has
been chairing meetings of the 77 ACP countries and their European
Parliament counterparts in Addis Ababa.
Cotton and commodity
agreements have been secured at the talks to ensure appropriate measures
to protect ACP countries dependent on banana, sugar, rice and cotton
Speaking from Addis,
Mr. Khanbhai said:
"This week we have succeeded in pushing the European
Commission to launch an action plan to help ACP cotton producers that
allows for compensation for loss of income resulting in depressed cotton
prices owing to overproduction in the US and China.
"Although the European Union supports its Greek and
Spanish cotton farmers, the EU is a net importer of cotton overall. The
problems faced by Western and Central African cotton growing countries
have been precipitated by the US and China subsidising their farmers and
exporting huge quantities world-wide, thereby suppressing prices.
"I have also been driving the agenda at these meetings,
to ensure the EU and ACP countries develop better management of the global