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Montevideo, November 15th 2018 - 15:40 UTC

Mujica holds cabinet meeting and flies off to Brazil and Venezuela

Saturday, November 9th 2013 - 19:21 UTC
Full article 7 comments
The Uruguayan president is concerned dollar-short Venezuela is not paying for Uruguayan exports The Uruguayan president is concerned dollar-short Venezuela is not paying for Uruguayan exports

Uruguayan president Jose Mujica decided to advance Monday's ministerial cabinet for Saturday so that he can fly to Brazil and Venezuela where he is scheduled to meet with Dilma Roussefdf and later Nicolas Maduro. Mujica on Friday al last moment cancelled his trip to Brasilia but will be meeting Rousseff in the southern city of Porto Alegre.

 The agenda with the Brazilian president includes Mercosur and the coming round with the European Union for a free trade and cooperation agreement; bilateral trade; integration issues; wind farms; Uruguay's planned deep sea port close to Brazil; the withdrawal of the peace contingent in Haiti, and most probably officially denied but significant Argentina's latest measures harming Uruguay's exports and ports' activities.

Regarding Venezuela, there is growing concern over the delay in payments for Uruguayan exports, and this is crucial for Mujica since Venezuela is in the short list of best clients for dairy produce, grains, beef, chicken and chemical products.

Likewise Maduro could request some advice from Mujica, since he is facing municipal elections next December and there is a growing disenchantment with his administration because of the endemic shortage of food and basics in Venezuelan stores and supermarkets. Besides inflation in Venezuela has rocketed to over 54% annually.

The situation is very delicate since Venezuela is a full member of Mercosur and currently chairs the group and is expected to host this half year's summit be it in December as planned or late January, depending on the medical condition of Argentina's Cristina Fernandez.

At domestic level Mujica could not avoid the cabinet meeting because last week the Supreme Court declared unconstitutional three articles of the law which dissolved the country's flag air-carrier Pluna opening the way for a cataract of compensation demands, plus the possibility of losing the Canadian built Bombardier aircraft, assets which had been protected from injunction. Demands could reach over 300 million dollars according to Uruguayan legal experts.

Another issue refers to recent police incidents probably the worse the killing of an 18 year old, who ignored a checkpoint and was shot several times in the back. The neighborhood reacted setting up road blocks and tires on fire plus attacking police forces. Apparently the police later 'planted' a gun in the teen ager trying to involve him in an armed robbery of a small store which triggered the whole tragic incident.

For a government that promotes absolute respect for human rights, the shootings of an alleged 'trigger happy' police have caused rifts in the ruling coalition and questioning of ministers.

Categories: Politics, Brazil, Mercosur, Uruguay.

Top Comments

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  • redp0ll

    Silly old booger.

    Nov 09th, 2013 - 08:11 pm 0
  • Be serious

    Uruguay should join the EU. Sounds like it would be a nett contributor, like Germany and UK almost immediately.

    Nov 10th, 2013 - 07:23 am 0
  • Conqueror

    What a terrific agenda! But none of it is real. The basic reason is that Pepe needs to be somewhere where he can't be contacted. He needs time before Mama Bear summons him to explain himself. All those nasty things he's been saying and doing. Imagine....criticising argieland. Refusing to do what Tinboy told him to do. Doing things behind the witch's back. Such treachery! Still, she can't actually kill him. Although an overweight individual of his age could be subject to all sorts of medical problems.

    Nov 10th, 2013 - 01:09 pm 0
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