Brazil said it is hard to see Paraguay rejoining Mercosur and Unasur before next year’s presidential election. The two blocks suspended the landlocked country following the removal of Fernando Lugo last June and replacing him with President Federico Franco.
Uruguay’s tenure of Mercosur rotating chair will be advanced six months meaning that at the coming summit in December Brazil will hand over the next six-month responsibility to the administration of President Jose Mujica, thus skipping Paraguay which remains suspended from the South American trade group.
Venezuela’s expulsion of Paraguayan diplomats from Caracas, as a direct consequence of the ongoing conflict inside Mercosur has left Brazil with the challenge of recomposing relations inside the group ahead of Mercosur next summit in December which will be hosted by the administration of President Dilma Rousseff.
Venezuela's government decided to expel Paraguay's remaining diplomats from the country, the top envoy at the Paraguayan Embassy said on Wednesday. Charge d'affaires Victor Casartelli said that he and three other Paraguayan diplomats in Caracas were told by Venezuela's Foreign Ministry to leave within three days.
Paraguay will begin exploring for hydrocarbons in the Chaco region, heartland of South America next 8 December, said oil consultant Mario Garnero after meeting on Tuesday with President Federico Franco.
Paraguay expects a significant upsurge in beef sales this year, despite the reported outbreaks of foot and mouth disease, because of the strong demand from Russia, according to local analysts.
Foreign minister Jose Felix Fernandez Estigarribia confirmed the beginning of negotiations for the re-incorporation of Paraguay to Unasur and Mercosur which will take place through the mediation of a Latinamerican country he did not identify.
By an overwhelming majority, 36 to 1 and eight absences, the Paraguayan Senate rejected the Unasur Commitment with Democracy Additional Protocol considering it contrary to the sovereign interests of the country and which was the argument used by the regional organization to sanction and suspend Paraguay.
Paraguay is involved in low key negotiations with the region to find a way for the quick return of the country to Unasur and Mercosur, and Chile and Colombia are playing crucial roles in such discussions, according to media reports from Asuncion.
President Federico Franco ratified on Monday before the Diplomatic Corps that Paraguay rejects point blank the incorporation of Venezuela as full member of Mercosur and also considers the country was unfairly treated by the block.