Nam-EU trade healthy and growing

16 Jul 2013 13:00
WINDHOEK, 16 JUL (NAMPA) - The visiting European Union (EU) Trade Commissioner, Karel de Gucht says trade between the EU and Namibia is healthy and growing at a fast pace.
?Our trade has grown at a rate of more than 200 per cent over just 10 years,? De Gucht told members of the media on Tuesday after a one-hour meeting with Prime Minister Dr Hage Geingob and Minister of Trade and Industry Calle Schlettwein, amongst other government officials.
He said during the past 10 years, Namibia has had a solid trade surplus with the EU, and in 2012, the bilateral trade was worth Euro 2 billion (approximately N.dollars 25,8 billion).
?It goes without saying that the conclusion of the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) is key for our trade relations,? he indicated.
Namibia currently enjoys free access to the EU market, and no duties are paid on Namibian products, whether industrial or agricultural, at EU borders. Namibia is also not subject to quotas.
De Gucht however indicated that this regime is based on a temporary instrument which will end on 01 October 2014.
After this date, he said, Namibia would not be eligible for preferential treatment for its exports to the EU, unless it has ratified an Economic Partnership Agreement.
De Gucht arrived in Namibia on Monday and leaves for South Africa on Wednesday. He is also set to visit Botswana.