EU relations with Liberia

Political relations

Relations between the EU and Liberia are based on the EU's partnership agreement with ACP countries – the Cotonou Agreement. Liberia has regular talks with the EU on a wide range of issues – regional, political, trade, development, governance, human rights etc.

Development aid

EU development aid to Liberia is paid through the European Development Fund (EDF). In 2008-13, the country received €223.8m to rehabilitate its basic infrastructure/social services and improve governance. The aid was used in line with the approach set out in the EU strategy paper for Liberia. For 2014-2020, the National Indicative Programm (NIP) , which has been elaborated and agreed with the Liberian Government, €279m are foreseen to support good governance, energy, education and agriculture. The EU has also been assisting in the country's recovery from the Ebola crisis.

Trade

As one of the world’s least developed countries (as defined by the UN), Liberia benefits from full duty and quota-free access to the EU market for all exports except arms/armaments under the EU's preferential access scheme, Everything But Arms .

Liberia is covered by the regional Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between the EU and West Africa (ECOWAS). A comprehensive EPA, once it comes not force, will bring Liberia a guaranteed access to the EU market and help promote regional trade.

The EU and Liberia have signed an agreement on fighting illegal timber exports from Liberia and improving sector governance. In 2015, a Fisheries agreement has been signed that regulates the fishing activities and establishes economic, financial, technical and scientific cooperation in the sector.

Forestry

In 2013, Liberia's Voluntary Partnership Agreement with the EU – under the FLEGT forestry protection initiative – came into force. This aims to improve forest governance and ensure timber exports to Europe are legal and from a certified country of origin.