V. MULTILATERAL TRADE AND ENVIRONMENTAL AGREEMENTS, AND DOMESTIC POLICY FORMULATION
A. Multilateral trade agreements
2. Lome Convention
The first Lome Convention was signed in 1975 between the European Union and the countries of the African, Caribbean and Pacific regions. The fourth and current Convention, Lome IV, was signed by Tonga in Mauritius on 4 November 1995, and will conclude in the year 2000. The Convention provides a relatively generous framework for aid, financial support, promotion of exports and enhancement of trade opportunities for the countries of the African, Caribbean and Pacific regions.
In economic terms, Tonga has derived considerable benefits from the Lome Conventions. As far as the environment is concerned, the first three Conventions gave little attention to environmental issues. However, following the worldwide trend, the environment was moved up on the political agenda of Lome IV. Thus, the prerequisite to granting aid to Tonga under the terms of Lome IV, as has been noted previously, is attention to three principles aimed at protecting, conserving and enhancing the environment and natural resources. Although those preconditions have not always been fulfilled in the implementation of Lome-funded projects in Tonga, they have had an impact on the official approach by the relevant government authorities to the importance of including environmental considerations in the formulation of government policies and programme.