Brazil’s Minister of Foreign Relations, Celso Amorim, reports that Mercosur member-nations have accepted an offer from Portugal to meet with the EU trade commissioner, Pascal Lamy, in Lisbon, on October 20, to continue talks on a free trade agreement.
The announcement was made following a meeting that brought together Amorim and the Foreign Mininsters of Argentina, Rafael Bielsa, Uruguay, Didier Opertti, and Paraguay, Leila Rachid, on Saturday in Rio de Janeiro.
“We will present a short, objective critique of the latest EU proposal,” explained Amorim, adding that although that proposal was considered “unacceptable,” there remained a chance of moving ahead and achieving successful negotiations.
The Minister said work on details for the meeting will get underway this week with special emphasis on what the EU offer failed to do in its last proposal and, at the same time, possible areas where Mercosur can be more flexible should the EU decide to make a better proposal.
The ministers will meet once again next Saturday, October 16, to draw up a final document for the Lisbon meeting.
Translator: Allen Bennett