EU and Mercosur reach political agreement for trade deal

The EU and Mercosur today reached a political agreement for an “ambitious, balanced and comprehensive trade agreement” according to a statement from the European Commission.

The commission says that the new trade framework – part of a wider Association Agreement between the two regions – will “consolidate a strategic political and economic partnership and create significant opportunities”.

European Commissioner for Agriculture Phil Hogan said: “The EU-Mercosur agreement is a fair and balanced deal with opportunities and benefits on both sides, including for Europe’s farmers.”

Today’s agreement also presents some challenges to European farmers and the European Commission will be available to help farmers meet these challenges.

“For this agreement to be a win-win, we will only open up to agricultural products from Mercosur carefully, with carefully managed quotas will ensure that there is no risk that any product will flood the EU market,” he added.

A deal with Mecosur has proved highly controversial in recent weeks, as the possibility of a deal drew closer.

All the major farming organisations in the country have come out in opposition to a potential deal, including a potential increase in the tariff quota for beef of 99,000t, as well as perceived contradictions between the EU’s climate policy and the record of some South American countries on climate change.