Mercosur through its pro-tempore presidency under Venezuela is involved in a round of contacts to agree on the group's much delayed XLVI summit which has been postponed because of problems with 'presidents' agenda', revealed Paraguayan foreign minister Eladio Loizaga.
Once the summit date is agreed, another appointment has to be addressed: that of Mercosur with the European Union to advance with a trade accord.
Foreign ministers are in a consultation process about a date that all presidents can attend, but that is the job of Venezuela, said Loizaga who added that hopefully it will be very soon. He added that 'presidents' agendas has been the main impediment.
Mercosur members had anticipated that during last week's Celac summit in Havana (Community of Latam and Caribbean States), most probably Venezuela president Nicolas Maduro would announce a date for the group's summit. But this did not happen.
Loizaga in mid January announced that the Mercosur summit scheduled for 31 January had been suspended. Apparently the postponement was on request from Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff.
The original date for the summit was last 12 December but was postponed for 17 January. Apparently it was the Argentine government because of president Cristina Fernandez health condition that requested a new date.
The Mercosur summit also urges because the group has to decide on the joint proposal on goods and services tariff reductions to be exchanged with the European Union for a trade agreement.
Allegedly there have been delays on both sides on completing the proposals, but last week the EU called on Mercosur to ask how many of the four original founding members will be sitting at the negotiation table.
Apparently the administration of President Cristina Fernandez in the midst of a serious economic situation is reluctant to lower tariffs or expose its market to foreign competition, which is further complicating the elaboration of a joint proposal.