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“Unlikely there will be a Mercosur/EU trade deal” in 2011 says Irish minister

Thursday, March 31st 2011 - 07:35 UTC
Full article 15 comments

Ireland believes it looks increasingly unlikely that there will be a Mercosur-European Union trade deal before the end of the year. Mercosur and the EU resumed trade talks in May 2010 with the objective of reaching a deal by the end of 2011. Read full article


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  • GeoffWard

    Ireland, France and Spain - countries whose farming lobby are the most powerful internal & EU voice.
    But who has most to gain/lose - EU or Mercosur?
    I would argue - the EU.
    Huge EU populations and need to import animal protein.
    Mercosur long-term contracts that could easily be placed elsewhere, like China.
    The problem is in Europe, and heads need banging together - with, of course, the usual political trade-offs.

    Mar 31st, 2011 - 07:52 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Fido Dido

    Ireland, France and Spain - countries whose farming lobby are ”the most powerful internal & EU voice of CRYING BABIES.

    Laughable, they are nothing without subsidies. But don't worry, this is the real deal with those countries.

    Ireland = Toasted (Today, Irish banks need more bailout money)
    Spain= Pending (It's getting Closer)
    France= Pending

    EU is on Fire.

    Mar 31st, 2011 - 09:16 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • briton

    The EU certainly is in trouble, we know my opinion on the crappy EU,
    but the more countries the EU bail out, the more chances you have of seeing the UK pull out, and others may well put up barriers against them, you just cant keep bailing out no hopers that just sit their and wait for you to give them money, as FIDO said, Ireland today is asking for another 20 billion, and state that they are at last being honest about the banks, this then puts the rest under the scope as to the true debt they may be hiding, remember the UK bailed its own banks out to over 35 billion plus, why then should the UK tax payer bail out others,
    their debt there problem, but once again you can bet under the counter corrupt deals with politicians will save the day, and the tax payers will lose the day ??

    Mar 31st, 2011 - 10:25 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Martin_Fierro

    Ireland is the only “country” bitching about the EU/Mercosur trade agreement.

    Who cares?

    Apr 01st, 2011 - 07:49 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • GeoffWard

    “Who cares?” Martin @4
    Why, the other countries of the EU and all the Mercosur countries.

    The purpose of Trading Blocs is to trade - perhaps you had forgotten that without trade a country must support its people from within, and, without major food trade outlets, countries like Argentina - with remarkably little economic resilience - go down the pan fast.

    Apr 01st, 2011 - 10:08 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Martin_Fierro

    I'll rephrase the question...

    Why is Ireland the only one complaining?

    Almost every single article on Mercopress about objection to the EU/Mercosur trade agreement is basically JUST about Ireland's objection and nothing else.

    I know what trade is Geoff, try and focus on my question, if you can.

    Apr 01st, 2011 - 11:28 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • GeoffWard

    “Who cares?” Martin @4 & 6

    #4 Why, the other countries of the EU and all the Mercosur countries.

    #6 Because beef trade is a major component of the Irish economy and dumping Argentinan beef on the EU market at below home prices will cause destruction of the home industry.

    But you know this already - why bother to ask the question?

    Or are you more interested in the power-play between the European Commission and the European Parliament, played out using this case?

    Similar in many ways to Mercosur, Paraguay and Venezuela.

    Apr 01st, 2011 - 01:01 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Martin_Fierro

    “why bother to ask the question?”

    Because I'd rather have you confirm my suspicions than speculate on something I know very little about.

    Did you ever stop to consider the possibility, that you are overpaying for food? Should the whole of the EU overpay just to keep Ireland happy?

    Again I can only speculate, but If I were a EU member, other than Ireland, I would be asking myself that question. Which is why I think the EU/Mercosur trade agreement will go forward. Your thoughts and the fact that Ireland is the only one complaining confirm my suspicions.

    If my logic is flawed, please explain why.

    Apr 01st, 2011 - 01:24 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • GeoffWard

    Hi, Martin,
    I too am just a second-hand-observer of Trading Bloc economics, but the EU Food dimension is the big beast in EU politics.

    The threat of France and Spain supporting Ireland is enough to cause the EU to back-track.

    The Common Agricultural Policy is probably THE main plank of the EU, and France and Spain are the big bears. Food provision, delivery stability and price management are key features of an economic bloc, as Mercosur will find out as it matures.
    These three features conspire to fix prices above the basal levels that each nation might negotiate with third parties for the short term, and the political power of the agricultural dimension of the EU member states is such that the prices fixed keep the farmers adequately paid and in business.

    For the UK, the downsides of membership included, inter alia, letting go of trade partnerships in the Caribbean (sugar) and sharing the disproportionately large UK EEZ waters with all other EU national fleets.
    It has produced mixed blessings, as Briton will tell you!

    Apr 01st, 2011 - 07:24 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Fido Dido

    The threat of France and Spain supporting Ireland is enough to cause the EU to back-track.

    Those three nations plus some eastern European countries who are in the EU are cry babies. They can't compete, their farm policies are nothing without subsidies.

    Apr 01st, 2011 - 09:36 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Martin_Fierro

    “disproportionately large UK EEZ waters”

    I think you mean disproportionately illegal UK EEZ waters.

    Apr 02nd, 2011 - 03:44 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • GeoffWard

    Martin, you misunderstand -

    look at a map of Europe and see where the median lines of notionally 250 mile offshore EEZs extend.
    You will see the importance of being an offshore island and how the extent of nation's offshore coastline disproportionately extends its EEZ.

    However, the CFP of the EU gives all members constrained and proportionalised right of fisheries exploitation in every other nation's EEZ waters; this is what being a member of a trading club is all about - fair sharing of resource.

    Seriously, Mercosur needs to look carefully at the evolution of the EU in order to move itself ahead. Mercosur is VERY simple by comparison (4 members), but the 'rules' of management of a trading bloc are similar - especially if blocs want to trade with each other.

    If Mercosur can build its model on the strengths and successes of the EU model, and avoid its weaknesses and failures, it can move a head very fast.
    But for the last 20 years it has had its finger on the STOP button rather than the GO button.

    Time to press the GO button.

    Apr 02nd, 2011 - 11:35 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • briton

    Put simply
    the EU is bad for britain, good for France and spain,
    brilliant for those in need, backed by Germany.
    A, sleeping giant awaiting to expand into your back yard.

    Apr 02nd, 2011 - 11:46 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • GeoffWard

    Hi, Briton,
    I was just waiting for you to pick up on my use of the word 'Fair' wrt the EU sharing of resources.
    Nice to see we have 'our fingers on the trigger' this bright and beatiful Saturday morning :-)
    Have a good weekend,

    Apr 02nd, 2011 - 01:06 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • briton

    Thank you geoff.

    or course some people like the EU, most people don’t, that’s why no European country in the western part, will not by choice be allowed a referendum, as the results would severely damage ones prestige ??

    Apr 02nd, 2011 - 06:23 pm - Link - Report abuse 0

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