Mercosur agrees on unified list of offers towards FTA with EU

Brazilian financial daily Valor Econômico reports that Mercosur has finalised its list of commercial offers for the European Union (EU), including the complete elimination of import tariffs for 87% of all products bought from the European bloc. According to the Brazilian minister for Development, Industry and Foreign Commerce, Mauro Borges, the offer could increase and include up to 90% of all products if certain details are ironed out during a meeting of Mercosur countries scheduled to occur in Montevideo on the 29th of April.

Threat of isolation accelerated Argentinian decision

The story states that Argentina’s marked change in negotiating posture surprised the Brazilian government. Brazilian officials considered suggesting to the other Mercosur partner countries that each drew individual lists of offers for presentation to European officials because Argentina was late in drawing up own list. Another problem to be countered was Argentina’s intention of increasing the period over which its tariff reductions would kick in, which was incompatible with the other Mercosur countries.

Unified proposal amidst European uncertainties

Borges also told Valor that Mercosur’s proposal will be unified and there will be no different speeds under which tariff reductions would enter into affect. In the European camp, the difficulties could arise with entry of the new EU chief-negotiator, Rupert Schlegelmilch, which officials say is not entirely up-to-date with all the details involved in the negotiations. In addition, the story concludes by saying that the EU is at this point more interested in finalising the TTIP with the United States, potentially delaying other agreements being negotiated.

Fonte/Source: Valor Econômico