European Business Associations Push for Swift Ratification of EU-Mercosur Agreement to Diversify Export Markets

In a joint effort to mitigate the impact of supply chain strains caused by the Ukraine conflict, the European Apparel and Textile Confederation (EURATEX), along with 18 other business associations representing various industrial sectors, have issued an open letter urging EU leaders to promptly ratify the EU-Mercosur agreement. The agreement is seen as a crucial step in diversifying export markets and strengthening Europe’s position in the region.

The letter, addressed to President Roberta Metsola of the European Parliament, President Charles Michel of the European Council, and President Ursula von der Leyen of the European Commission, emphasizes the significance of the EU-Mercosur agreement in Europe’s broader strategy in the Latin American market. It calls for quick action to overcome existing trade barriers and secure a “first mover advantage” for European businesses in the region.

Amidst the Ukraine conflict, which has strained supply chains and highlighted the need for diversified trade relations, European businesses are increasingly recognizing the importance of securing operational supply chains in a volatile global setting. The EU-Mercosur agreement is seen as a vital tool for preserving Europe’s competitiveness, addressing strategic dependencies on raw material supply, and mitigating concerns over feedstock and demographic challenges.

While acknowledging concerns regarding environmental aspects, the associations emphasize that the agreement would incentivize Mercosur countries to uphold their sustainable development commitments, including measures to combat illegal deforestation. The agreement also presents an opportunity to address global challenges such as climate change, forest preservation, and labor rights through enhanced regulatory dialogue and cooperation.

The letter highlights the EU’s significant investment in the Latin American region, as well as the 40% increase in bilateral trade since 2018, owing to existing free trade agreements. By ratifying the EU-Mercosur agreement, European businesses aim to further strengthen economic and geopolitical ties, consolidating Europe’s role as a key player in Latin America.

In their collective call to action, the associations urge the EU and its institutions to expedite the ratification process of the EU-Mercosur agreement. The swift approval of the agreement is deemed essential to ensuring Europe’s competitiveness, securing operational supply chains, and diversifying export markets in the face of ongoing geopolitical challenges.

As European businesses that contribute to job creation and the welfare of European citizens, the signatories emphasize the critical role the EU-Mercosur agreement can play in safeguarding Europe’s economic interests and global standing.

The plea from these influential business associations serves as a rallying call for EU leaders to recognize the urgency of ratifying the EU-Mercosur agreement, ultimately benefiting European industries, workers, and the broader European economy.



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