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EU-Tunisia negotiations: Free trade without trading freedoms?

Spring 2018 is about to see two fundamental negotiations for Tunisia conducted between representatives of Tunisia and the European Union (EU). First, during the week of April the 17th, negotiations will be held on the readmission of migrants and the facilitation of visa applications for a small number of Tunisian men and women. Secondly during the month of May, discussions will deal with the conditions of trade between Tunisia and the European Union with the aim of signing the DCFTA (Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement).

Carried out in the same time frame, these negotiations were linked following a Tunisian request: the fear was that freer movement of goods, financial flows and services would not mean freer movement of people.

These negotiations commit Tunisia for decades to come. They may change the economic and social structure of the country. The 1995 Association Agreement, which opened the industrial sector to competition, has been criticised for its consequences, which continue up to nowadays. [1] To identify what strategies are carried out in these negotiations, we analyze here what the European Union is aiming at, what they expect to gain and how they intend to negotiate. Our aim is to anticipate the results and consequences over the long term, so as not to suffer unwanted repercussions in the future.

Last Update 2018-05-21
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