28 June 2021 — Position Papers, Press Releases

Joint Business Statement on EU-Mercosur Association Agreement

We, the coalition of European business associations representing differentEuropean sectors call for the swift ratification of the EU-Mercosur associationagreement. With the political agreement reached already 2 years ago (June 2019),now is the time to move forward and unlock the manifold mutual benefits thatthis agreement will deliver.

The EU-Mercosur agreement:

  • is the largest and most ambitious trade agreement ever negotiated by bothsides, provides regulatory certainty for both trade in goods and services, andestablishes better trade links between countries of respectively 440 and 260million citizens. The agreement will unlock growth and help both regions to recover from the current economic and public health crisis, invest in the greentransition and diversify global supply chains and our core market base.
  • includes the most advanced sustainable development provisions that willfoster partnership, help mitigate climate change and bind both sides toeffectively implement the Paris Agreement.
    Unilateral legislative initiatives atEU level, such as upcoming initiative on deforestation and the review ofexisting rules on timber trade and fight against illegal logging will enhance thiscooperation and effectively ensure that exports to the EU will not contribute todeforestation or soil degradation.
  • includes enforceable commitments on workers’ rights and environmentalprotection through a dedicated dispute settlement mechanism that includesan active role for civil society organisations and calls on the expertise ofinternational bodies, whose reports and recommendations must be madepublic. In case of non-respect of any of these provisions an automaticmechanism will trigger formal government consultations

Failure to ratify the agreement would leave the EU and Mercosur with fewerinstruments to build mutual trust and cooperate to face the biggest challenge ofour time. Moreover, non-ratification will lead to Mercosur countries continuingto trade, or even expanding their trade, with other trading partners that havesubstantially lower environmental and labour standards.
The EU-Mercosur association agreement is very important for both the EU andMercosur: in 2019, EU-27 exports in goods to Mercosur accounted for €41.2 billion ,whereas export in services reached €21.1 billion in 2019 . EU27 headquartered firmsinvested €114 billion in Mercosur markets since 2010, creating 290,000 jobs inBrazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay .

Read the Full Statement HERE