Negotiators take stock of EU-Mercosur trade agreement progress

Negotiators from the European Union and Mercosur met on the margins of ministerial meeting between the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and the EU. The goal of the bilateral talks between the two blocs was to take stock of their efforts to develop a EU-Mercosur trade accord, along with whether they should set a new target date for wrapping up the talks before the end of 2018. Argentine Foreign Minister Jorge Faurie said that “the effort that both blocs made now clearly leaves us at the start of the final negotiating stage”, while European officials have indicated that they are not in a position to announce a timeframe, given the various items remaining on the negotiating agenda.