- trade and development arrangements between the EU and the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries – designed to facilitate the ACPs' integration into the world economy through gradual trade liberalisation and improved trade-related cooperation
- tailored to suit specific regional circumstances - and promote sustainable growth and poverty reduction through trade (including assistance to help ACPs implement the agreements)
- set within the framework of the EU-ACP Partnership Agreement (Cotonou Agreement) governing relations between the EU and the ACP countries. Under the EPAs, EU markets are immediately and fully opened, while ACPs have 15 years to open to EU imports (with protection for sensitive imports) and even 25 years in exceptional cases.
Read more on the European Commission website.