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Friday, 5 October, 2001, 16:08 GMT 17:08 UK
EU to boost trade links with Africa
The European Union will seek closer trade links and greater co-operation in the fight against terrorism when it meets African foreign ministers in Brussels next week
The European Union (EU) will seek closer trade links and greater co-operation in the fight against terrorism when it meets African foreign ministers in Brussels next week.

The meeting, scheduled for Thursday, is a follow-up to last year's first ever EU-Africa summit, which gathered the leaders of 67 nations in Cairo.

Improving Africa's poor economic and social conditions topped the agenda on that occasion.

Poverty, trade and conflict prevention will now be on the agenda at next week's meeting with African ministers.

Sharing knowledge

Another big issue will be intelligence sharing on suspected terrorists, and co-operation to block money laundering and terrorist finances - along the lines of recent agreements between the EU and Russia.

"The conference is a good opportunity to intensify the political dialogue with the whole continent of Africa," the European Commission said in a statement.

The EU continues to be Africa's biggest foreign aid donor.

It recently signed an aid and trade package with the so-called ACP group of 77 African, Carribean and Pacific nations.

See also:

03 Sep 01 | Europe
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10 Jul 01 | Africa
Ivorian gets top Africa job
13 Jul 01 | Africa
Nigeria to work with EU in Africa
29 May 01 | Business
West urged to lift African imports
28 Apr 01 | Africa
EU warns Zimbabwe over threats
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