The Expert group on EU trade agreements, composed of representatives of civil society organisations, meets today to discuss e-commerce and the EU’s trade relationships with Africa. Negotiations in the World trade Organisation (WTO) on electronic commerce or e-commerce were launched early March and the European Commission is currently preparing the EU’s first contribution to the discussions. Following the launch of the new Africa-Europe Alliance for sustainable investments and jobs, the Group will also exchange views on the role that the EU can play in fostering Africa’s economic opportunities. The EU and African countries can trade through Economic Partnership Agreements which provide preferential access to the EU market for African products and aim at supporting, through trade and investment, sustainable development and poverty reduction. As part of its commitment to a transparent and inclusive trade policy, the Commission set up the Expert group on EU trade agreements in December 2017 to have a regular platform to engage with stakeholders and civil society representatives, such as employers’ organisations, trade unions, or consumers’ associations. The Expert group provides advice and additional technical expertise in various areas of trade agreements, negotiations and policy.