LatinNews Daily - 16 March 2023

In brief: Uruguay’s Lacalle Pou slates EU-Mercosur deal

* Uruguay’s President Luis Alberto Lacalle Pou has stated that he is “not very optimistic” about the prospect of the ratification of the free trade agreement (FTA) between the European Union (EU) and Mercosur trade bloc, which comprises Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay. The FTA was completed in 2019 after two decades of negotiation, but has yet to be ratified. During a speech before Uruguay’s association of marketing managers (ADM), an industry organisation, Lacalle Pou stated that he was not optimistic about the prospect of the deal being ratified on “both sides of the Atlantic”, due to “the issue of the Amazon” and France and Ireland’s “strong” stance on agricultural issues. Disagreements over environmental protection clauses with the Brazilian government led by former president Jair Bolsonaro (2019-2023) had been the main reason for the delay in ratification, although it had been hoped that this would be resolved with the new government of President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva who has been a vocal supporter of the deal and has pledged to protect the Amazon. Lacalle Pou also said that he has heard that Argentina’s government led by President Alberto Fernández is planning to seek further modifications to the deal. Lacalle Pou stated that he hoped the issues would be resolved soon as “it is not serious to have an agreement there for 25 years… and even less so in the modern world where everything changes”, adding that “the frustration of expectations has a much more negative effect than never having had the expectation.” Lacalle Pou has long been vocal about the sluggish rate at which Mercosur has gone about securing trade deals and has said this was why Uruguay was seeking other possibilities, such as a unilateral FTA with China and membership to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) trade deal, in violation of Mercosur rules.

End of preview - This article contains approximately 308 words.

Subscribers: Log in now to read the full article

Not a Subscriber?

Choose from one of the following options

Intelligence Research Ltd.
167-169 Great Portland Street,
5th floor,
London, W1W 5PF - UK
Phone : +44 (0) 203 695 2790
You may contact us via our online contact form
Copyright © 2022 Intelligence Research Ltd. All rights reserved.