Monday, January 30th 2012 - 07:14 UTC

Mercosur is stalled: nobody comes knocking on the door, says Mujica

Uruguay's President José Mujica said that Mercosur bloc is “stalled” and has no natural institutional operation to push other countries to express their willingness to enter it plus lacking the fluidity of a natural relationship.

The Uruguayan president says “it kind of works by phone calls thanks to top officials”

In an interview to Brazilian newspaper Folha de Sao Paulo, Mujica remarked, “In terms of trade, the Mercosur is fine because despite the difficulties, it grew. But I also see that it lacks institutional warranties”, and added, “It [Mercosur] kind of works by phone calls, or thanks to the work of foreign ministries when there is a difficulty here or there.”

”If nobody knocks on the door to come in, that is the best signal that we are stalled”, added the Uruguayan president. “This means we don’t grow because to do so there should be a very tangible vision out there that it is good business to join Mercosur”.

Mercosur which last year celebrated its twentieth anniversary is made up of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, plus Venezuela in the process of incorporation although exposed to great resistance from the Paraguayan congress. Last year Ecuador formally requested to begin the membership process.

In the last summit held in Montevideo on request from Argentina it was agreed to increase the common external tariff to try and mitigate the possible impacts of the international economic crisis.

The interview was done a month ago when President Mujica travelled to Sao Paulo to meet former president Lula da Silva who is undergoing chemotherapy for throat cancer and as a guest of the Citadina foundation.

“The government of Lula da Silva was a model; it helped a lot of people climb out of misery. However between left and right there can’t be much conciliation in a long term sense, It’s like a permanent dispute but the dispute must not become in a confrontation that fossilizes society and that is the principal experience he left us”, said Mujica.

4 comments Feed

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1 Falkland Fred (#) Jan 30th, 2012 - 09:57 am Report abuse
“has no natural institutional operation to push other countries to express their willingness to enter it plus lacking the fluidity of a natural relationship.”
In other words one of the most influential members of mercosur is that irritating thorn just east of Chile who won't do anything with anyone unless they back up the claim to the Falklands. Be honest my Argentine amigos the only reason that Uruguay, Brazil, Chile etc back your unfounded claim to my Islands is to secure trade with Argentina, there is no other reason why they do it.

I see now that CFK is trying to change the constitution again to try and stay in power for a third run, then she will try for a forth etc, all to the detriment of Argentina. You can tell how good a leader she is by the fact that there is a growing movement within Argentina that is questioning the honesty of the claim to the Falklands.

It looks like CFK's cut throat policies (pardon the pun) are starting to wear out.
2 ChrisR (#) Jan 30th, 2012 - 01:22 pm Report abuse
Mercosur is an organisation with two big and two small members and now a thug wants to join (if he lives long enough).

It might be time for something better.
3 GeoffWard2 (#) Jan 30th, 2012 - 02:30 pm Report abuse
It's really good to see a mercosur national president speaking forthrightly, openly and honestly about the state of Mercosur.

I have posted frequently on this site, saying exactly the same as Mujica. saying that there is no future for Mercosur unless the partners work with commonality, and build up an administration that creates rapidly the protocols that attract world trade to the common good of all members.

Success of the organisation is not to be measured in the number of countries that want to join (Venezuela and Ecuador) - for God's sake we have seen the EU out-reach its own capabilities,
it is to be measured in the desire of the world's countries and trading blocs to beat a path to its door and to drive towards mutually valuable trading deals.
4 El Gaucho Rivero (#) Jan 30th, 2012 - 04:34 pm Report abuse
@ 1 Falkland Friend

Leaving the Malvinas/Falklands issue aside, trade is important, so is the oil downthere, and the UK is running out of it, I call that a coincidence

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