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Managing neo-liberalisation through the Sustainable Development Agenda: the EU-ACP trade relationship and world market expansionThe EU suggests that it is committed to ‘sustainable development’ including through its institutionalised relationship with the states of the African, Caribbean and Pacific group in the Cotonou Partnership Agreement. This paper reviews this relationship with a view to outlining the way in which concepts like ‘sustainable development’ and ‘poverty reduction’ act as legitimation for processes of world market expansion. The paper reviews a range of interpretations of this relationship which view it either from a constructivist or material – Uneven and Combined Development – perspective. We critique these interpretations and provide an alternative materialist reading.