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Mercosur

Mercosur

The EU is negotiating a trade agreement with the four founding members of Mercosur (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay) as part of a bi-regional Association Agreement.

Venezuela has been a member of Mercosur since 2012 and is an observer in the trade negotiations.

Current trade relations between the EU and Mercosur are based on an inter-regional Framework Cooperation Agreement which entered into force in 1999.

The EU and individual Mercosur countries also have bilateral framework cooperation agreements, which also deal with trade-related matters.

The Mercosur Free Trade Agreement

The EU-Mercosur negotiations re-launched in May 2010 before negotiations were paused in 2012.

In May 2016, the EU and Mercosur relaunched negotiations and exchanged offers, followed by a negotiation round in October 2016. The current negotiations cover issues that include:

  • tariffs
  • rules of origin
  • technical barriers to trade
  • sanitary and phytosanitary measures
  • services
  • government procurement
  • intellectual property
  • sustainable development
  • small- and medium-sized enterprises

More information on the EU-Mercosur trade deal

Trade picture

Note: the figures below represent trade with the four Mercosur countries negotiating with the EU

  • The EU is Mercosur's biggest trading partner, accounting for 21.8% of the bloc's total trade in 2016.
  • The EU's exports to the four Mercosur countries totalled €41.5 billion in 2016. Mercosur's exports to the EU were €40.6 billion in 2016.
  • Mercosur's biggest exports to the EU in 2016 were agricultural products, such as foodstuffs, beverages and tobacco (24%), vegetable products including soya and coffee (18%) and meats and other animal products (6%).
  • The EU's exports to Mercosur include machinery (28%), transport equipment (17% of total exports) and chemicals and pharmaceutical products (24%).
  • The EU exported €20 billion of services to Mercosur in 2014.
  • The EU is the biggest foreign investor in the region, rising from €130 billion in 2000 to €387 billion in 2014.
  • Mercosur is a major investor in the EU, with stocks of €115 billion in 2014.

EU-Mercosur "trade in goods" statistics

Trade in goods 2014-2016, € billions
Year EU imports EU exports Balance
2014 44.8 51.2 6.4
2015 44.3 49.2 4.9
2016 41.6 43.2 1.6

Date of retrieval: 15/02/2017

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 Generalised Scheme of Preferences (GSP) scheme as of 2014, due to their classification as high middle-income countries. However, they remain GSP-eligible countries.

Trading with Mercosur