in: South African Journal of International Affairs 21 (2), 279-296
Since 2000 the cooperation between the European Union (EU) and the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) states has been governed through the Cotonou Partnership Agreement. This article complements existing research that focuses on Brussels-based stakeholders with an analysis drawing on the existing literature and on stakeholders' perceptions of ACP–EU cooperation and ACP institutions gathered via interviews in nine ACP countries. The findings presented observe a social disconnect between, on the one hand, the Cotonou Partnership Agreement's institutions and Brussels-based representatives, and, on the other hand, the broad-based and multistakeholder partnership they are tasked to promote. The article points to low levels of support in ACP countries, particularly in Africa, to continued ACP–EU cooperation in its present form, and stresses the need for an open and participatory process of reviewing and reshaping ACP–EU relations.