THE FOUR PILLARS OF PUBLIC POLICY ADVOCACY

Successful policy influence hinges on four critical pillars, namely, the quality of strategy, the extent and functionality of networks, the level of political and legal sophistication, and the ability to leverage knowledge and information and communications technology (ICT)

1. The quality of strategic planning has a direct bearing on the success of public policy advocacy: Poor quality policy input often stems from a lack of a clear and coherent strategy. You won't be able to achieve desired outcome without adequate strategic planning.

CONSTRAINTS FOR EFFECTIVE PUBLIC POLICY ADVOCACY IN THE BALKANS

Most of the Balkan states are unicameral parliamentary democracies (except for BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA) in which the executive branch is democratically legitimised by and accountable to the legislature.

CHAIR OF AALEP INVITED AS GUEST SPEAKER IN SARAJEVO

The Chair of the Association of Accredited Public Policy Advocates (AALEP) has been invited by the Foreign Trade Chamber of Bosnia and Herzegovina as Guest Speaker at a seminar to be held on 8 May in Sarajevo.

EU-INDIA FREE TRADE AGREEMENT NEGOTIATIONS REGAIN MOMENTUM

Negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the European Union and India have regained momentum after the visit of a high level Indian delegation on 15 April led by Commerce and Industry Minister, Anand Sharma. India and the EU began the FTA talks in 2007 and they are almost six years into the negotiations.

THE CHALLENGE OF REFORMS IN FRANCE

France faces worrying economic and social issues. The French welfare system no longer seems sustainable in the face of demographic pressure, mounting debt, and persistent unemployment.

HOW TO MAXIMIZE THE BENEFITS OF FTAs ?

Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) have proved to be one of the best ways to open up foreign markets for exporters. FTA partner countries provide each other favorable treatment on trade, investment, provision of services and trade facilitation as well as economic and technical cooperation. Exporters benefit from FTAs through preferential treatment and market access. They also enjoy cost savings from elimination or reduction of customs duties and from mutual recognition agreements, trade facilitating customs procedures and removal of onerous regulations.

PUBLIC POLICY ADVOCATES AND CONFLICTS OF INTEREST PREVENTION

Increasingly accountability and ethics are at the centre of governing agenda. Governments want to uphold the public trust to the highest standard and this responsibility falls uniquely on all public office holders. Conflict of interest law and post-employment code for public office holders is a critical component of accountable government.

CROATIAN UPDATE

Croatia’s economy will shrink for a second consecutive year in 2013, when it joins the European Union. In 2012 Croatia registered a negative growth (-2%) in GDP. Gross domestic product will contract 0.4 percent this year and return to “subdued” growth in 2014 with a 1 percent expansion.

BUSINESS ADVOCACY IN TRADE POLICY : A MUST FOR SUCCESSFUL EU FTAs

Business advocacy in trade policy is a special form of persuasive activity undertaken by business organisations (Chambers of Commerce, Industry Associations, or Individual Companies) which aim to influence trade-policy making and international trade negotiations. It is the planned and systematic effort to ensure that changes in trade policy are supportive of business development with the national/European and international economy.

EU's FREE TRADE AGREEMENTS: WHERE DO WE STAND?

Over the next two years, 90% of world demand will be generated outside the EU. That is why it is a key priority for the EU to open up more market opportunities for European business by negotiating new Free Trade Agreements with key countries. If the EU were to complete all its  current free trade talks , it would add 2.2% to the EU's GDP or €275 billion. In terms of employment, these agreements could generate 2.2 million new jobs or additional 1% of the EU total workforce.

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