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Brazil wants Venezuela out of the Mercosur rotating chair

Friday, June 3rd 2016 - 08:41 UTC
Full article 4 comments
Maduro's Venezuela is scheduled to take the Mercosur chair at the summit scheduled for the end of the month  Maduro's Venezuela is scheduled to take the Mercosur chair at the summit scheduled for the end of the month
Serra, the new Brazilian foreign minister is no fan of Mercosur, particularly the consensus principle which limits members from signing bilateral trade deals Serra, the new Brazilian foreign minister is no fan of Mercosur, particularly the consensus principle which limits members from signing bilateral trade deals
Brazilian presidents Lula, Rousseff and Cardoso have been close friends of Venezuela and helped both Chavez and Maduro   Brazilian presidents Lula, Rousseff and Cardoso have been close friends of Venezuela and helped both Chavez and Maduro

Brazilian government would like to block Venezuela from taking the rotating presidency of Mercosur later this month, a move to further debilitate Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro's power, according to Planalto sources close to interim president Michel Temer, who admitted the proposal has yet to be discussed with other members.

 Under suspended President Dilma Rousseff and her predecessor Lula da Silva, Brazil gave strong, although recently quiet, support to Venezuela's former President Hugo Chavez and his successor Maduro. Former liberal Brazilian ex Fernando Henrique Cardoso also provided crucial support, funds and oil, to Chavez during the 2002/03 strike at PDVSA, the country's oil company and main source of income.

The strike was accompanied by an attempted coup, which finally collapsed, and Chavez returned to office.

However the foreign minister of Temer's administration Jose Serra has said he wants to focus Brazil's foreign policy more on trade with the United States and the European Union and less on taking what he called ideological stances driven by Lula-Rousseff's Workers Party.

Serra also wants to see Brazil freed from the Mercosur rule banning members from signing bilateral trade deals unless all members agree.

That rule stands in the way of the Temer government's effort to open up Brazil's economy, one of the most closed in Latin America because of high tariffs and a lack of trade agreements.

There are two ways Brazil could try to block Venezuela from taking over the Mercosur presidency, said the presidential aide. Brazil could work to cancel or delay the meeting this month, which would temporarily keep Uruguay at the head of the trade bloc. Or it could try to win the votes of other members to suspend Venezuela from Mercosur.

Paraguay last week asked for an emergency Mercosur meeting, scheduled for next week, to discuss the political situation in Venezuela and consider a possible suspension.

Nevertheless whether Brazil's plans finally work out, it has been agreed that Uruguay will continue commanding the Mercosur trade talks with the European Union. Venezuela is not included in the negotiations since it became full member in 2012 and the trade talks took off in 1999,

Categories: Politics, Brazil, Mercosur, Venezuela.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules
  • Klingon

    Lefty's are out Righty is the new vogue.

    Jun 03rd, 2016 - 10:39 am 0
  • ChrisR

    Who wants a MADuro in charge at Mercosur?

    There are enough bat-shit mad prats on the committee as it is.

    Jun 03rd, 2016 - 07:03 pm 0
  • SauveQuiPeut

    Bit like arguing over which lunatic should run the asylum.

    Jun 04th, 2016 - 04:32 am 0
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