Argentine president Mauricio Macri who has made signing trade deals a priority, said he was optimistic that Mercosur, the trade bloc formed by Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, would be able to conclude a free trade deal with the European Union by year-end despite differences over beef, ethanol and other agribusiness matters.
European Union leaders have agreed to press ahead with Mercosur talks and European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker confirmed the bloc will “continue to do everything” to conclude a deal before the end of the year. “It's important,” Mr Juncker said. “We underestimate the importance of Mercosur for the European Union.”
France will propose changing the European Commission’s mandate to negotiate a trade deal with Mercosur bloc to include food safety provisions, its envoy to Brazil said on this week.
Aerolineas Argentinas has become the latest carrier to suspend flights to Caracas. The company said it had concerns over security in Venezuela because of increasing criminal violence and political uncertainty. It joins dozens of airlines who have taken similar action.
Uruguay's foreign minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa announced he will be meeting foreign secretary Boris Johnson next Monday, in London to address Brexit consequences and Uruguay's interest is reaching a trade agreement with the UK. Although both sides are interested in such an understanding, this will be an initial contact, the strong intention which will have to be followed up by detailed negotiations, points out the Uruguayan government ministry.
Argentina’s 2018 budget bill forecasts economic growth of 3.5% next year and average annual inflation of 15.7%, Treasury Minister Nicolas Dujovne told Congress. The bill proposes a 2018 primary fiscal deficit of 3.2% of gross domestic product (GDP) as previously announced.
News of a potential offer of a tariff rate quota for 85,000 tons of beef in the Mercosur/European Union negotiations has triggered a dismayed reaction from the ICSA’s (Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers’ Association’s) Beef Chairman Edmond Phelan.
Brazil's lower house of Congress has given initial approval to a bill to reduce the huge array of political parties that have made it hard to govern the country and contributed to corruption. The chamber voted 384-16 for the establishment of a minimum national vote threshold that parties must reach to get public funding and free radio and television time for their election campaigns. The requirement would be 1.5% of votes in 2018, rising to 3% in 2030.
Brazil's Police raided the home of a top government official Thursday seeking evidence in yet another corruption case involving a member of embattled President Michel Temer's Cabinet. The operation was authorized by Brazil's top court and is part of an investigation of Agriculture Minister Blairo Maggi, who is suspected of bribing state lawmakers during his 2003-2010 terms as governor of Mato Grosso.
Pushing the European Union Mercosur deal is a “completely unacceptable”, according to Meat Industry Ireland’s (MII) director Cormac Healy. In a statement, Healy said that any progression and completion of the Mercosur trade deal will have negative effects on the EU beef market.