Steffen Wippel

The Agadir Agreement and Open Regionalism: The New Forum for Integration on the Southern Shore of the Mediterranean in the Context of Multiple Regional Orientations

EuroMeSCo Papers 45, EuroMeSCo Secretariat at the IEEI, Lisboa, September 2005 <>.

Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt and Jordan took the decision to combine their bilateral trade arrangements to form a common free trade area at a time when Arab Mediterranean countries saw the increasing need for more regional integration. At the same time the issue did not progress any further in the Arab world. This paper focuses on several institutional and geographical aspects of economic integration under the Agadir Agreement and the context in which it was realised. Some introductory remarks highlight the background of the agreement, focusing on the worldwide growing regionalisation and some of its characteristics, as well as on the progress of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership (EMP). The second chapter presents the steps towards greater economic integration of the four signatories of the Agadir Agreement, the final outcome of which is to be a wider Mediterranean Arab Free Trade Area (MAFTA). Among the provisions of the agreement, common rules of origin are of special interest. The subsequent chapter deals with the economic relations between the Arab Mediterranean countries and will focus on trade volumes, shares and intensities since the 1990s. The next chapter examines the conflicting or complementary relation of the Agadir Agreement to other regional orientations of its current and potential member states, mainly in the rest of the Arab world and sub-Saharan Africa. It first of all explores their participation in regional institutions and goes on to analyse existing directions of trade. A special section examines conflicting trade provisions. Another chapter looks at the mental maps of observers and local agents. It concentrates on Moroccan opinions voiced on the country's regional affiliations and the significance of the Agadir Agreement in relation to other regional groupings. In conclusion, final proposals will discuss the multiple options in overlapping economic areas and possible adjustments to effect a viable and advantageous integration in the region.

« Zurück zur Homepage
« Zurück zur Veröffentlichungsliste