“We believe that the process we are carrying out with respect to the negotiation opportunities offered by the world -which we call smart insertion- can only be achieved through the consensus of the private sector, trade unions, workers, law-makers and society as a whole,” the Secretary for International Economic Relations, Horacio Reyser, stated today in Congress, as he informed Deputies and Senators of the progress of the negotiations towards a Mercosur – European Union trade agreement.
In the Delia Parodi room, at a meeting that was jointly organized by the Argentine Foreign Minister and the Argentine Congress, Reyser added: “Agreements of this kind require, because of their strategic importance, a wide debate, which has to be even wider now that we are entering a crucial stage.”
During the meeting, chaired by Congresswoman Cornelia Schmidt-Liermann (a member of Unión Pro), the president of the Foreign Affairs and Worship Committee of the House of Deputies, Reyser explained: “There are several blocs and countries interested in entering into negotiations with Mercosur. In addition, the closing of this agreement will make Mercosur a more stable and trustworthy bloc at the global level, so it can work as a model case that will open up more opportunities.”
“In these times of rising protectionist signs, we believe it is highly positive that two blocs, which account for 800 million people, engage in negotiations to close an agreement of such a scope,” he remarked before Deputies and Senators, as well as members of several committees: industry and trade, regional economies and SMEs, foreign affairs, among others.
Reviewing history, the Secretary for International Economic Relations highlighted that: “Mercosur was firstly an element of political stability in the region, and then it enabled the growth of trade exchanges within the bloc; but the truth is that Mercosur fell short of integration with other markets. Nowadays, it only has free trade agreements with Israel and Egypt.”
When addressing the queries of legislators from different parties, and joined by the Secretary for Agri-industrial Markets of the Ministry of Agri-industry, Marisa Bircher, Reyser pointed out that “this is not just an agreement relating to meat, as often believed; it is much broader for Argentina, as we have many other interests.”
Finally, Bircher stated: “We are in contact with all the Chambers representing every sector, and we are travelling to the provinces, taking into consideration the situation of each regional economy.”
It should be noted that, before the end of the meeting, it was agreed to define and set a schedule for upcoming follow-up meetings to be held between the officials in charge of the negotiation and legislators.
Press release No. 479/17
Press Office: 4819-7375 / 8296 / 7388
Originally published at https://www.cancilleria.gob.ar/en/news/releases/mercosur-eu-agreement-reyser-met-deputies-and-senators-congress