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LATAM-Spanish PM: EU Partners Reluctant To Ratify Mercosur Deal


Wires carrying comments from Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez as he hosts Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in Madrid. Sanchez states that his 'EU partners are reluctant to ratify Mercusor deal, but [he] will try to persuade them.' Adds that the 'Circumstances are in place to get Mercosur agreement ratification.'

  • The return of Lula to power in Brazil had raised EU hopes of getting a deal across the line, but the president's seeming geostrategic shift towards China and calling for the US to "stop encouraging war” in Ukraine led to major concerns about the policy priorities of the leader of Latin America's largest economy.
  • Yesterday, Politico published an article outlining that even if the geopolitics does not align, Brussels remains keen to get a deal on Mercosur. There remains some significant opposition to Mercosur among several EU members, notably France and Austria. The former has raised concerns about the impact of cheap agricultural imports on domestic farmers, while the latter has made calls for major efforts to stop deforestation in the Amazon.
  • A summit of EU and LatAm leaders takes place in Brussels 17-18 July and comes at a time when Spain will have taken over the 6-month rotating presidency of the Council of the EU and Brazil will hold the president pro tempore position in Mercosur. There will be hope among EU-Mercosur FTA proponents that the summit can be used as a stage to have the final ratification of an agreement.

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