On 18 July 2019, the United Kingdom signed an agreement with Central American nations in Managua to ensure that British businesses and consumers benefit from the same duty-free treatment when leaving the European Union as they do as a member of the EU. The trade agreement between Central America and the European Union, signed in 2006, was called the Association Agreement. Source: Banana Link (August 2010) “Central American trade unions call on governments to reject EU trade deal”. On 6 April 2009, the EU made a statement to inform about the temporary interruption of negotiations for an Association Agreement between the EU and Central America. A few days later, on 24 April 2009, the EU and Central America agreed to resume negotiations for an agreement. The agreement is called the “Association Agreement”, in which the Free Trade Agreement is one component among others (in terms of cooperation and political dialogue). It is also a “progressive” agreement, as its provisions are gradually adopted over time. The Parties recognize that economic development, social development and environmental protection are interdependent. Chapter 9 reaffirms their commitment to multilateral environmental and labour agreements and principles and commits themselves to maintaining their level of protection. Trade in forest products is subject to a separate provision.
Arbitration procedures shall not apply to this Chapter. Despite the propaganda and hype of the EU negotiators of the EU-Central America Association Agreement on the social and working conditions to be promoted by the AA and on the participation of civil society in the negotiations, trade unions on both sides of the Atlantic expressed disappointment and anger at the fact that the EU did not take its views seriously. Like other civil society organizations, they see the final agreement as unilateral and strongly trade-oriented. The European Union and Central America (Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama) signed an Association Agreement at the meeting of the Presidents of the Central American Integration System in Tegucigalpa (Honduras) on 29 June 2012. The Association Agreement between Central America and the European Union entered into force on 1 October 2013 for Costa Rica and El Salvador. Two months later, the 01 agreement for Guatemala entered into force on December 1, 2013. The agreement also provides a framework for cooperation and development, particularly in the areas of the environment and human rights. Article 359 of the Agreement provides for the accession of new members.
Although the agreement is about sustainable development and the environment, there is no guarantee of protection for Central America, one of the most biodest regions in the world. However, for Luis Muñoz of the Guatemelan Center for Cleaner Production, the experience gained under the free trade agreement with the United States in force in Guatemala since 2006 shows that such agreements can generate positive demands. The Association Agreement between the EU and Central America (Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama) presupposes an important step in relations between the two regions. The parties have completed the legal review of the Association Agreement, which includes an overall trade component. . . .