New Year has taken off in Uruguay with a raft of utilities' rates increases which includes power, fuels, drinking water, telecommunications, urban bus fares, plus extra taxes on tobacco and gambling. Inflation in the twelve months to November was 6.30%.
Although Uruguay is well positioned internationally when it comes to corruption perception, it is considered among the least corrupt together with Chile in Latin America by Transparency International and LatinoBarometer, a public opinion poll published the last week of 2017 in Montevideo seems to show quite a different perception, particularly among young people.
The Falkland Islands Environment Committee, held a lively debate on the cost of the landing fee for cruise visitors which is scheduled to be increased to £25 per passenger, and which was described as “the highest in the region” by the head of the Islands Tourist Board.
The European Union now hopes to conclude a trade deal with the Mercosur bloc by February next year. EU agriculture chief Phil Hogan admitted that there were still 15 “open issues”, following a “difficult” meeting with the Mercosur countries in Buenos Aires last week.
Officials in Venezuela took the first step on Saturday toward expelling top diplomats from Brazil and Canada who have been accused of meddling in the country’s politics. National constituent assembly president Delcy Rodriguez declared both Brazil’s ambassador and Canada’s charge d’affaires as persona non grata, a move which does away with their diplomatic credentials.
Chilean Foreign Affairs Minister Heraldo Munoz called for closer ties between Latin America's two leading trade blocs. Mercosur and the Pacific Alliance should work more closely together, Munoz told the 51st Mercosur and associate members summit held this week in Brasilia.
Argentine president Mauricio Macri in Brasilia expressed full solidarity with the Venezuelan people, called for human rights respect and freedom for the political prisoners held by the regime of president Nicolas Maduro.
Mercosur is the most isolated and protectionist block in the world, said Argentine president Mauricio Macri on Thursday during a meeting with Argentine media, in Brasilia, in the framework of the current presidential summit during which the six-month rotating chair of the group will passed from Brazil to Paraguay.
A resolution backed overwhelmingly by the United Nations has effectively called on the US to withdraw its recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The vote in support of the resolution was 128, nine against and 35 abstentions. The South American Mercosur block, currently holding a summit in Brasilia, voted divided, while Brazil and Uruguay supported the resolution, Argentina and Paraguay abstained.
Egypt is attending the ministerial meeting of the Mercosur bloc in Brasilia to deliver a message about the importance of joining the group, Minister of Industry and Foreign Trade Tarek Kabil said in a statement.