End of Year Letter


December 21, 2019

We write to thank our readers and contributors for a really productive 2019. When this blog published its introductory post in January 2019, we stated that our goal was "to make  / a vibrant home for all issues related to African International Economic Law." We believe that with your support, we have met that goal.

This blog has also met another of its goals of providing a forum for reflecting and discussing international economic law developments in Africa more contemporaneously than books and articles are able to do. This has been an important year for international economic law in Africa particularly because of the coming into force of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, (AfCFTA). Our very first symposium on the AfCFTA in January 2019 set the stage for several important thematic and book symposia throughout the year. For those symposia see here: /symposia/

With the support of our readers and contributors, has gone beyond an African focus. The blog's scope has expanded to  the Global South. In particular, has hosted excellent original analysis of IEL issues from the Caribbean and beyond. Our symposia on the UNIDROIT/FAO/IFAD Legal Guide on Agricultural Land Investment Contracts as well as the one on Sustainable Development Goals, Trade, Investment, and Inequality  attracted perspectives from many Global South experiences and perspectives.

The book symposia have been very productive. We are delighted to have hosted all of them. The one on Eleanor Fox and Mor Bakhoum book, Making Markets Work for Africa: Markets, Development, and Competition Law in Sub-Saharan Africa, the first book on competition law in Africa, opened a debate on one of the issues seldom addressed in IEL in the Global South.

2020 will be another important year in IEL for the Global South. The Cotonou Agreement between the EU and the African Caribbean and Pacific countries will come to an end. Negotiations for a post-Cotonou Agreement will increase in pace. In addition, phase 2 of the AfCFTA will accelerate. The implementation of the AfCFTA Phase 1 will continue and will be there to monitor, debate and discuss the developments. 2020 will also witness the launch of the African Journal of International Economic Law, a journal inspired in large part by the support of all of you on this blog.

We thank everyone who has made this blog a very engaging and informative forum - from the academics, to the policy-makers, to graduate and other students and everyone else who has supported this blog through their contributions, by reading what our contributors take so much of their time to write as well as for following and supporting us on all our social media platforms.

There is already an exciting set of symposia and individual blog posts slated for early 2020.

We look forward to continuing to collaborate with all of you in 2020. Happy holidays.

The Editorial Team.