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Brazil and Germany committed to achieve the EU/Mercosur trade agreement

Wednesday, February 15th 2012 - 05:50 UTC
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 Patriota and Westerwelle at Ytamaraty Palace in Brasilia Patriota and Westerwelle at Ytamaraty Palace in Brasilia

Brazilian Foreign Minister Antonio Patriota and his visiting German counterpart Guido Westerwelle on Monday called for signing a free trade agreement between the European Union and the South American trade bloc Mercosur.

”We count on the Brazilian presidency (of Mercosur) in the second half of the year“ to make progress, Westerwelle told a press conference with Patriota at his side.

Negotiations over a free trade agreement have stumbled so far over differences on agriculture -- notably Europe's subsidies to its farmers, which undermine Mercosur efforts to sell its own products.

The German minister said reaching a deal ”will not be easy,“ but he said Berlin would use ”all its weight to ensure that the negotiations succeed.“

Patriota meanwhile pledged that Brazil would, during its presidency, ”devote its energy and attention to this bi-regional project.”

The two foreign ministers also discussed Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff's visit to Germany in March, where she is scheduled to open the Hanover technology fair.

The German minister later visited Sao Paulo for the opening of the German Innovation and Science Centre, DWIZ, where he praised Brazil as “a success story” and admitted that Europe has underestimated the potential of Latin America.

“Brazil is a dynamic country and a natural partner of Germany since we share common values of freedom, human dignity, rule of the law and democracy”, said Westerwelle who underlined the entrepreneur spirit of Brazilian business.

He went on to say that the inauguration of the Sao Paulo DWIZ is a project being replicated in New York, Moscow and Tokyo and soon in New Delhi and Cairo, based on promoting education and cooperation in the teaching of science and research.

Westerwelle underlined that Sao Paulo “has the largest concentration of German industries investing in research outside of Germany”.

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  • GeoffWard2

    Linkage between Brasil and Germany is a 'no-brainer'.
    Linkage between Mercosur and the EU is similarly obvious and mutually beneficial.

    But if the French and Irish farmers, and the Argentinan government continue to block the better interests of some 30-40 nations, then I would be strongly in favour of dumping France, Ireland and Argentina and creating 'bilateral' trading (etc) agreements that remove these countries from the partnerships.

    In practice, FR and IR have established a negotiating position which is not a 'deal-breaker' . . . . but Argentina is 'something else again'!

    It would be sensible, however, to have across-the-board compatibility across the rest of the EU/Mercosur nations because, at some time, these 'bilateral' agreements will have to let the errant nations back into the fold and having a simply unpickable single-structured set of deals will be so much more tractible than 30 structurally different bilateral packages across upwards of 100 different commodities.

    Feb 15th, 2012 - 05:11 pm 0
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