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Mercosur

Mercosur

The EU is currently negotiating a trade agreement with Mercosur as part of the overall negotiation for a bi-regional Association Agreement which also cover a political and a cooperation pillar.

These negotiations with Mercosur were officially relaunched at the EU-Mercosur summit in Madrid on 17 May 2010. The objective is to negotiate a comprehensive trade agreement, covering not only trade in industrial and agricultural goods but also services and establishment and government procurement, and the improvement of rules inter alia on government procurement, intellectual property, customs and trade facilitation, technical barriers to trade.

Nine negotiation rounds (the last one from 22 to 26 October 2012) have taken place since then.

Until now, rounds have focused on the part of the agreement related to rules and the two regions are still working on the preparation of their market access offers. No date has been set yet for the exchange of market access offers.

In 1995, the EU and Mercosur countries signed an Inter-regional Framework Cooperation Agreement, including cooperation on trade-related matters. This agreement was concluded in 1999.

Trade picture

Mercosur countries:

  • The EU is Mercosur's first trading partner, accounting for 20% of Mercosur's total trade in 2013. EU-Mercosur trade in that year was €110 billion.
  • Mercosur is the 6th most important export market for the EU (2013 data). EU's exports to the region have steadily increased over the last years, going up from € 28 billion in 2007 to €57 billion in 2013
  • Mercosur's biggest exports to the EU are made of agricultural products (43% of total exports) and raw materials (28%), while the EU mostly exports manufactured products to Mercosur and notably machinery and transport equipment (46% of total exports) and chemicals (22% of total exports) [data of 2013].
  • The EU is also a major exporter of commercial services to Mercosur (€18.5 billion in 2012), as well as the biggest foreign investor in the region, with a stock of foreign direct investment that has steadily increased over the past years and which amounted to €280 billion in 2012 compared to € 130 billion in 2000.

EU-Mercosur (5) "trade in goods" statistics

Trade in goods 2011-2013, € billions
Year EU imports EU exports Balance
2011 56.5 50.8 -5.7
2012 54.1 56.9 2.8
2013 47.1 57.0 9.8

EU-Mercosur (5) "trade in services" statistics

Trade in services 2010-2012, € billions
Year EU imports EU exports Balance
2010 8.2 14.1 6.0
2011 9.1 15.8 6.8
2012 9.1 18.5 9.3

Foreign direct investment

Foreign direct investment 2012, € billions
Year Inward stocks Outward stocks Balance
2012 105.2 280.3 175.1

More statistics on Mercosur

EU and Mercosur

Mercosur was established in 1991 and encompasses Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela, which officially joined in July 2012. In December 2012,the Protocol of Accession of Bolivia to Mercosur was signed. This Protocol is pending ratification by all Parliaments in Mercosur countries.

The EU has bilateral Partnership and Cooperation agreements with Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay.

All Mercosur countries, with the exception of Paraguay, no longer benefit from the the GSP scheme, as of 1 January 2014, due to their classification as high middle-income countries. However, they remain GSP eligible countries.

Trading with Mercosur