Motion for a Resolution by the Committee on Foreign Affairs (AFET)

Bless the trade down in Africa – The EU is Africa’s largest trading partner, with the EU trading EUR 225 billion worth of goods in 2020 with the continent. Bearing in mind the adverse history between the continents, the effects of which are still being felt, what should the EU do to improve relations and boost equitable trade with Africa?

Submitted by Joulia Snaker (Mencia de Mendoza College), Daantje van Hout (Mencia de Mendoza 
College), David Pham (Cartesius Lyceum), Raphael Gross-Chartuni (Chairperson, NL)

The European Youth Parliament,

  1. Acknowledges the negative effects of imperialism on Africa’s economy as the African Union (AU) relies on the export of cheap raw materials in exchange for expensive import products,
  2. Deeply concerned that tax evasion by European corporations in Africa has resulted in an annual loss billions of euros and prompted African governments to raise taxes,
  3. Deeply alarmed by the use of slave labour in Africa by multinational corporations,
  4. Pointing out that child labour can reinforce a cycle of poverty and lead to economic stagnation,
  5. Deeply regretting that the EU limited Africa’s access to COVID-19 vaccines as it pre-ordered excessive quantities of them and refused to relax Intellectual Property (IP) patent laws,
  6. Having examined the inadequate infrastructure to store and transport vaccine  inoculations, and the lack of proper healthcare facilities to administer them in Africa,
  7. Aware of the European Commission’s focus on the implementation of green policies in the AU despite Africa only being responsible for two to three per cent of CO2 emissions in the world;
  1. Urges the European Commission and the AU to create an office dedicated to the identification and prosecution of labour exploitation, slavery, and tax-evasion by European corporations in Africa;
  2. Further urges the European Commission to amend the Anti Tax Avoidance Directive to increase penalties for repeat offenders of tax evasion, labour exploitation, and slavery;
  3. Emphasises the European Commission to propose a scheme in the EU to prohibit the sale of products produced with labour exploitation or slavery;
  4. Asks the European Commission to set up a platform for sharing academic knowledge between European and African researcher and experts;
  5. Directs the European Science Foundation to provide additional research dedicated to easily storing and transporting vaccines without IP patenting;
  6. Requests the European Commission to remove or adjust current IP laws on current European COVID-19 vaccines and updated boosters;
  7. Invites the European Commission to aid the AU with an African Recovery Plan that would provide resources and information on the COVID-19 vaccination process in Africa;
  8. Reminds the European Commission to exclude requirements similar to the ones seen in the European Green Deal during the upcoming renewal of the AU-EU partnership.