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MERCOSUR and the EU step up final stage of negotiations in Brasilia

10 November 2017
Información para la Prensa N°: 

Today, the Foreign Ministers of MERCOSUR met in Brasilia with the Vice-President of the European Commission, Jyrki Katainen, to whom they submitted a comprehensive proposal on behalf of the bloc in order to reach a Mercosur-European Union agreement. At the meeting, both sides agreed to boost the final stage of negotiations with a view to concluding a trade agreement.

"Now is the time to find the political courage to fulfil our purpose," Foreign Minister Jorge Faurie stated, assuring that "he is confident" that "a framework agreement" will be signed between both sides soon. "This agreement will send a very strong signal not only to Mercosur and the EU, but also to the whole world," he emphasized.

In turn, Mr. Katainen stated: "While some wish to build walls, we wish to build bridges. The partnership agreement proposal and our trade negotiation prospects are very important because they reaffirm our stance against protectionism. We favour fair, rules-based trade that benefits all". He also underscored the need to reach "agreements based on values".

"I am certain that the signature of this agreement, if achieved, will boost investor confidence and will send a signal to businesses in order to prepare for an increase in trade," the Argentine Foreign Minister stated.

In addition, the Brazilian Foreign Minister, Aloysio Nunes, reaffirmed that "the South American bloc is taking action and entering into negotiations with various blocs and countries, but negotiations with the EU set a benchmark for all others."

"We are sending a positive signal to the world. We wish to reaffirm the importance of multilateralism, fair and balanced trade, and exchange among countries as an instrument of prosperity and peace," Nunes highlighted.

"We are in Brasilia to send a clear political signal of support to the negotiating teams of our blocs. We have never been closer to signing the agreement," Uruguayan Foreign Minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa stated.

Deputy Foreign Minister Luis Fernando Avalos also attended the meeting on behalf of Paraguay and, in addition to reiterating his country's support, he stated that he "sees great hope in multilateralism" and expressed his willingness to "do everything possible" to conclude the agreement.


Press release No. 513/17

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