The dialogue about agricultural trade between the European Union (EU) and West Africa goes back to the 1980s, when the EU was highly criticised for their high expenditure on export subsidies for agricultural products. Several trade agreements between the EU and West Africa have been implemented since then, and in the beginning of 2000s, the EU has agreed to restructure their subsidies for agricultural commodities.
Marisa Twahirwa (Business Economics, 2019) researched this in her Master's Thesis.
Marisa: "In my Master's thesis I studied the impact of EU subsidies towards West African agriculture production, specifically in Ghana, Guinea, Senegal and Nigeria. Using a mixed methods approach, I first conducted a quantitative analysis on how EU agriculture subsidies impact the development of West African agriculture production in the timeframe of 2000-2016. In the second part I interviewed participants from Nigeria during the Agrofood convention in Lagos that I attended. I could conclude that processed food imports from the EU substitute to an extent the domestic agriculture products in Nigeria."
"Furthermore, the historical focus on the petroleum industry, neglect of enhancing agricultural production policies by the government, small scale farms and Asian agricultural commodities have been found to have a higher impact on the agricultural production in Nigeria than EU imports. This implies that networks among farmers in Nigeria, sharing knowledge, technology and transportation facilities could enhance productivity. Government policies that promote domestic production such as subsidies and price regulations could be useful, if rightful implementation is enforced."