September 2005

The Agadir Agreement and Open Regionalism

Steffen Wippel

Abstract

Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt and Jordan took the decision to combine their bilateral trade arrangements to form a common free trade area at a time when Arab Mediterranean countries saw the increasing need for more regional integration. At the same time the issue did not progress any further in the Arab world. This paper focuses on several institutional and geographical aspects of economic integration under the Agadir Agreement and the context in which it was realised. It discusses the multiple options in overlapping economic areas and possible adjustments to effect a viable and advantageous integration in the region.