Is the EU's Governance 'Good'? An Assessment of EU Governance in its Partnership with ACP States

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UNU Institute on Comparative Regional Integration Studies/ Institute for European Studies
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UNU-CRIS Working Paper
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This paper examines both the processes and outcomes of governance in the context of the EU’s relationship with ACP States within the period of the Cotonou Agreement (CA). It discusses and assesses a variety of governance mechanisms, including the European Commission’s use of the governance concept, EPAs, manifestations of partner preferences, the EDF, the revision of the CA, and Fisheries Partnership Agreements. Specific examples of the wielding of each mechanism are assessed based upon two criteria: a) the extent to which the wielding of the mechanism by the EU is a manifestation of “good governance”, and b) the extent to which the EU’s wielding of the mechanism has resulted, or is likely to result, in the sustainable development of and reduction of poverty in ACP countries. The examples are chosen to illustrate contradictions between rhetoric and practice and the consequential negative (actual and potential) impact upon development in ACP States. The final section offers suggestions for improving the EU’s governance processes and their outcomes for development.