EU relations and cooperation with Barbados are carried out both on bilateral and regional basis, the latter within the framework of the on-going EU-CELAC and EU-CARIFORUM dialogues. Barbados is party to the Partnership Agreement between the members of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States and the European Union and its Member States, the "Cotonou Agreement".
The EU-Barbados cooperation strategy for the period 2008-2013 supports government policies, in particular those aimed at promoting the development of human resources and economic diversification by means of general budgetary assistance. The focus is on diversification of the country’s economic base, mainly through assistance aimed at the development of human resources, and support for the national authorities in their efforts to ensure an economically and ecologically viable transformation of the traditional sugar industry, to be re-orientated towards the production of ethanol and electricity.
At regional level, the Caribbean is pioneer in signing, in October 2008, the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), between the Caribbean Forum (CARIFORUM countries) and the EU, a framework to help make trade, investment and development assistance easier for all parties, in particular promoting regional integration. Barbados is a signatory of the EPA.
In November 2012 the member states of the EU and the Caribbean adopted the new Joint Caribbean-European Union Partnership Strategy . This Strategy will enhance Caribbean– European Union relations and broaden the engagement by adding a political pillar to the traditionally development and trade cooperation based relationship with the Caribbean region. The strategy focuses on Regional Integration, Haiti Reconstruction, Climate Change and Natural Disasters, Crime and Security, and Joint Action in Multilateral Fora.