What are the research and capacity building interventions needed to foster access to EU and other international markets?

  • Potentials in the international market for agricultural food products produced by selected African countries
  • Technical barriers to access EU and other international markets
  • Products quality and accreditation standards
  • Sanitary and phytosanitary standards (SPS)
  • Rules of origin, EU and other international trade policy requirements
  • Enhanced agri-food value chain efficiency
  • Required technologies for processing agri-food products to add value

What are the most important WTO and EU rules and regulations regarding market access?

  • WTO market access rules – GATT and Doha agreements
  • WTO special and differential treatment provisions for LDCs
  • EU rules and regulations on market access for LDCs
  • EU standards to foster greening

This case study is to identify the key interventions needed by SSA countries, as represented by findings from Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia and Ghana that needed to foster access to EU and other international markets. To achieve that, a capacity needs assessment (CNAs) will be carried out in each country, which will provide a database of information of what is needed to address the identified challenges and gaps. The specific focus will be on bridging the identified challenges and gaps related to quality/standards to meet rules and regulations to access the EU and other international markets. Additionally, the case study will also include institutional frameworks, policies and social considerations such as non-use of under-age labor force in production and processing, sustainable involvement, and, benefits accruing to youth and women. Environmental considerations to include minimal pollution of water bodies and preservation of forests. The case study is expected to contribute to SDG1, 2, 3, 15 and 13. Cross-cutting issues such as gender and the environment will also be taken into account. The prepared database/reports from the case study will be assembled such that it can be used by other agencies to prepare capacity building materials for different stakeholders in the four study countries of Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia and Ghana.

Statutory institutions in Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia and Ghana that oversee standards relating to food quality (e.g. Bureau of Standards, environmental sustainability agencies, labour bureau health and safety for consumer protection (Sanitary and Phytosanitary departments), as well as policy and institutional framework related to food and nutrition security.

The trade policies and product regulations that affect participation of SSA countries, as represented by Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia and Ghana, in the EU and other international markets will be key. Additionally, the case study will look at African Regional Trade Agreements and Intra-African Trade in relation to access to EU and other international markets. Food security matters are also guided by African Union’s New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) under the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) as customized by each country.

Challenges and capacity gaps in relation to agricultural food production and productivity, meeting market demand and supply conditions, infrastructure and logistical arrangements, technological innovation and accreditations requirements that are linked with quality and standards that influence access to EU and other international markets.

Close collaboration with local partners in each of the selected SSA country (Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia and Ghana) who are knowledgeable and involved in agri-food value chains development international trade policies, rules and regulations. The same partners will contribute to research and preparation of reports that will have identified key information that will be used for capacity building of stakeholders. In the needs assessment a mixed study approach will be used to capture both qualitative and quantitative data. Collaborating partners in each country will participate in the dissemination webinars and workshops for purpose of collective understanding of the findings from the study as well as dissemination of the assembled materials.

The following data will be collected from Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia and Ghana: (i) Data on main agri-food products with potential to be exported to the EU and other international markets (product type, quantity traded both exports and imports over the past 5 years, revenue earnings, and main importing countries); (ii) Data on each product related to production and productivity levels (including challenges facing each product); (iii) Associated policy and institutional frameworks; (iv) Legal, regulatory, institutional and policy issues/challenges related to EU and other international market access and meeting WTO rules and regulations. ; and, (v) verification of ultimate usefulness of the information assembled for other stakeholders to prepare capacity building manuals for stakeholders to address the observed challenges and gaps.

Contribution to the body of knowledge about the study topics and enhancement of the ability of key stakeholders to access EU and other international markets. It will also contribute ion to the achievement of SDGs 1, 2, 3, 15 and 13.

Case Study Leader

The Economic and Social Research Foundation

Lοcal Partner(s)

University of Dar-es-Salaam, Business School / School of Economics

SDG's Addressed


Geographical Focus and Scale


Product and market focus

The agri-food products covered in the case study are (tentative):

  • Horticultural crops (fruits, e.g. avocado): Tanzania, Uganda, and Ghana
  • Root/tuber crops (e.g. cassava): Tanzania and Ghana
  • Beverages (coffee and cocoa): Uganda (coffee), Ghana (cocoa), Ethiopia (coffee)
  • Meat/Beef: Ethiopia and Tanzania

Key stakeholders

  • Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (including Bureau of Statistics)
  • Research and Capacity Building Institutions
  • Development Partners
  • Private sector associations and NGOs
  • Agri-food value-chain actors: small and medium businesses enterprises (SMEs)