In 1975, the EEC and 46 former colonies of EEC member states concluded an aid-and-trade agreement that became the centrepiece of the EEC’s development policy; the Lomé I Convention. The milestone agreement was called ‘revolutionary’ and ‘a turning point in history’ and has been the subject of numerous studies, providing very different and contradictory interpretations. This study revisits this ‘drawing together of peoples of several continents’, presenting a study of primary data that became available with the opening of the archives on the Convention. The study finds that Lomé I was the result of intergovernmental and geopolitical dynamics: France and the UK were the main drivers behind the process, with other EEC members, especially Germany, hitting the brakes. The former metropoles aimed at maintaining their sphere-of-influence by concluding a Convention at EEC level that held the middle-ground between their respective relationships with ‘clients’ in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific.
Drieghe, L. (2019). The first Lomé Convention between the EEC and ACP group revisited: bringing geopolitics back in. Journal of European Integration. https://doi.org/10.1080/07036337.2019.1682566