Monday, December 3rd 2012 - 04:58 UTC

Mercosur summit to discuss incorporation of Bolivia and Ecuador as full members

The Mercosur summit which meets this week, December 6/7 in Brasilia is scheduled to debate the incorporation of Ecuador and Bolivia to the regional block which earlier this year, after waiting since 2006 finally integrated Venezuela as full member.

Evo Morales and Rafael Correa are willing to join, but….

President Dilma Rousseff is the host and will pass the chair on to Uruguay for the next six months skipping Paraguay currently suspended from the group. Argentine Cristina Fernandez, Uruguay’s Jose Mujica, Bolivia’s Evo Morales have confirmed their attendance.

Paraguayan president Federico Franco will be absent since the country following the removal of Fernando Lugo last June has been suspended until next April 2013 when elections are scheduled. Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez is under cancer treatment in Cuba and will be represented by his Vice president and Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro. Most other South American countries have also been invited since they are associate members.

“The incorporation of Ecuador and Bolivia to Mercosur is in the agenda of the meetings, it has been in previous summits”, said a spokesperson for the Brazilian Foreign ministry. However “there are no prospects of a definitive decision”, even when Brazil supports expanding the regional block.

Bolivian president Morales confirmed in November that Ecuador and his office has received formal invitations to join as full members and admitted it was the intention of his country to effectively do so. Both countries are currently associate members.

Foreign minister David Choquehuanca said at the time that in Brasilia “we will begin the dialogue process for full adherence”, although Bolivia insists in remaining a member of the Community of Andean Nations, CAN, together with Chile, Peru and Colombia. “We want to be a hinge between the two groups”, said the Bolivian official. Besides, strong farm and manufacturing lobbies have warned about the Brazilian and Argentine competition if Bolivia is absorbed by Mercosur.

The Mercosur round begins next Thursday, ahead of the Friday summit, with a meeting of Finance and Foreign Affairs with the purpose of defining “actions and recommendations”, reported on Sunday the Brazilian Foreign Ministry.

Another issue in the agenda of the summit is to prop more active business participation and for this a special forum has been organized parallel to the Mercosur two day talks and it is expected to be attended by industry leaders from Brazil and Argentina mainly.

Venezuela’s formal entry as full member was last July 31 at a special summit in Brasilia, which means the South American block now has a population of 270 million and huge reserves of cereals and oil seeds, minerals, power and oil.

The access of Venezuela has not been without controversy, since Paraguay was suspended and impeded from participating in the decision and according to the Mercosur charter new incorporations must be unanimous. The controversy arises from the fact that the Paraguayan Senate for years was against Venezuela in the block as long as Hugo Chavez was president, since he was considered ‘non democratic’.

To make things worse with Paraguay formally suspended, the country’s Senate effectively took a vote on the issue, which it hadn’t done until the moment because of the expected outcome and as forecasted overwhelmingly voted against incorporating Venezuela as a full member.

Paraguay has also protested the fact that it has been skipped from the chair, since Mercosur is advancing the calendar and for the next six months the responsibility falls on Uruguay.

Uruguayan president Jose Mujica when the controversy in June/July over the suspension of Paraguay and the decision to accept Venezuela as full member, said that sometimes “political reasons are more important than charters and rules”.

19 comments Feed

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1 ProRG_American (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 05:41 am Report abuse
GREAT! South America growing stronger and more independent day by day. Congratulations!
2 LEPRecon (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 06:46 am Report abuse
Great! Brazil and Argentina continues to break Mercosur rules by illegally incorporating their buddies into the club, whilst Paraguay is absent.

And it is illegal. It requires consent from ALL members, that would include Paraguay. So Venezula is illegally part of Mercosur, and it looks like Bolivia and Ecuador will be too.

So much for South American solidarity. It appears to be a case of 'if the face fits' you're in and if it doesn't then your sidelined.
3 ManRod (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 10:25 am Report abuse
club of losers getting bigger... You still need Cuba, Haiti and Nicaragua getting in, then you'd be complete!
4 Conqueror (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 10:50 am Report abuse
@2 I thought that “mercoslobs” was supposed to be a “trade” organisation. But I should be able redouble my efforts with MEPs now to get the EU to drop negotiations with this illegitimate organisation.

”Uruguayan president Jose Mujica when the controversy in June/July over the suspension of Paraguay and the decision to accept Venezuela as full member, said that sometimes “political reasons are more important than charters and rules”.

Indeed? Don't dictators usually come out with similar sort of rubbish. But then we all know where the dictatorships are in LatAm, don't we?
5 ChrisR (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 11:49 am Report abuse

Don't leave out North Korea!


Pepe also said 'Rulers have to ignore the law when necessary'.

FFS 'Rulers' in this day and age. He has been on the weed too much.
6 Condorito (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 01:14 pm Report abuse
Quite right.

“Don't dictators usually come out with similar sort of rubbish”
Yep. I was thinking the same myself.
Going off tangentially: about 1,500km separate our copper mines and Paraguay’s abundant hydro power. That is half the distance from proposed hydroAisen to the same mines. It is time we got Bolivia on board, after all, I am sure we could offer them a little slice of something they want.
7 aussie sunshine (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 01:22 pm Report abuse
A USA of Latin America!! great!!
8 Shed-time (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 01:28 pm Report abuse
Autocracies of a feather, flock together.
9 aussie sunshine (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 01:35 pm Report abuse
well let us hope that they “ flock together” and make this a great continent..
10 Shed-time (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 02:59 pm Report abuse
@9 so you go by the political principle that if you push together some of the most badly-run morally-vacuous nations then you'll somehow get a diamond?

That, Sir, really does say a lot about latin american logic.
11 Condorito (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 03:21 pm Report abuse
You never know. Look at Europe, you took well run nations and pushed them together to form a badly-run morally-vacuous super-national grouping.
12 Conqueror (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 05:32 pm Report abuse
@10 There are some unimportant parts of LatAm that need to be broken off or gouged out before it will get anywhere. Starting with argieland. Then Bolivia and Ecuador need to be gouged out. Another place to be broken off is, of course, Venezuela. Once you've got all the worm-holes and rot, take it away and sprinkle it in the ocean. Find somewhere really DEEP! Then somewhere like Chile can take the lead. Regrettably, large parts of LatAm show all the signs of requiring the same sort of treatment as that meted out to Germany around 70 years ago.
13 briton (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 07:24 pm Report abuse
A united South America,
Or a united dictatorship,

Your future, so no complaining when they stuff you..
14 Britworker (#) Dec 03rd, 2012 - 09:18 pm Report abuse
Correct, that's why we want out as soon as possible. I think the difference in South America is Mercosur seems to be more if a political alliance as opposed to an economic one. Suspending Paraguay for a purely domestic matter was a mistake, the pushing through the states with despot leaders whilst they are suspended is just downright underhand
15 ANTONN (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 01:26 am Report abuse
Again, mostly South American haters...they don't want us know the old saying DIVIDE AND CONQUER...the US and the EU use it in order to keep control while they keep the US and the EU zones UNITED in order to keep in charge. The late now..the genie is out the Mercosur will take in Colombia, Peru and Chile..It is a matter of time.
16 ManRod (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 08:35 am Report abuse
“next Mercosur will take in Colombia, Peru and Chile”

As long, as we, the population of these 3 nations are still mostly mentally sane, we will know how to avoid it!
I rather believe, that there might be Mercosur Members joining the alliance of the decent, like Uruguay and Paraguay. Seems the air in the pacific isn't that poluted like in other places, where it seems to eat brains.
17 briton (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 02:03 pm Report abuse
But in this case,
Its divide and survive
they will bring you to ruin.
18 Condorito (#) Dec 04th, 2012 - 02:18 pm Report abuse
100% agree.

There are better ways to be unified than through Mercosur. If you think Mercosur equals a united South America, then you are very wrong. Ask the Greeks how united they feel right now. They have partially lost sovereignty.

In Mercosur there is one giant (Brazil), one dwarf (Argentina) and then a few smurfs. It is a partnership of unequals and doomed to fail in its current form. Mercosur is hopeless.

“next Mercosur will take in Colombia, Peru and Chile” – so the 3 fastest growing countries in the region, all of which have successfully negotiated FTAs with dozens of countries and trade blocs around the world are going to join a hopeless pseudo-trade/ideological bloc in which the two principle members can’t even agree on bilateral trade issues? It is more likely the world ends on the 21st of this month.

It is not the US/EU which divides us, it is the mighty Andes... and from this side the future is north, west and bright.
19 Shed-time (#) Dec 05th, 2012 - 09:27 am Report abuse
When is iran joining?

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