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Title: Confirming the Status Quo: The Political Economy of EU-ACP Economic Partnership Agreements
Authors: Darren Cheong
Soo Yeon Kim 
Keywords: Corruption
economic partnership agreements
sustainable development
Issue Date: 11-Jan-2021
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Citation: Darren Cheong, Soo Yeon Kim (2021-01-11). Confirming the Status Quo: The Political Economy of EU-ACP Economic Partnership Agreements. Journal of European Public Policy 29 (03) : 448-467. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: This paper examines how the European Union's good governance initiatives under its sustainable development agenda affect ratification of Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) with African, Caribbean, and Pacific (ACP) countries. The theoretical framework argues that the likelihood of ratification is influenced by adjustment costs a signatory faces in implementing EPA provisions. We focus on the level of corruption as indicative of adjustment costs. In partner countries where corruption is high, EPAs that stipulate the lowering of tariffs and improved sustainability standards would clash with the interests of ACP elites and result in hefty adjustment costs. Empirical analysis of 78 ACP countries supports this argument. Results show that the likelihood of EPA ratification is lower in ACP countries with high levels of corruption. They support prevailing theories of self-selection into international agreements, where a given signatory is more likely to ratify agreements close to its institutional status quo.
Source Title: Journal of European Public Policy
ISSN: 1350-1763
DOI: 10.1080/13501763.2020.1869806
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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