Morocco to resume agreement talks with Mercosur

11 de outubro de 2017

São Paulo – A Morocco-Mercosur meeting will take place in November in Brasília to resume talks for a free-trade agreement, the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said. The Arab country already sustains an agreement with the Mercosur, which dates back to a visit by king Mohammed VI to Brazil in 2004.

The Brazilian government is currently in the temporary presidency of the Mercosur bloc. Bz’s foreign minister Aloysio Nunes sat down with the Moroccan Minister of industry, Investment, Trade and Digital Economy Moulay Hafid El Alamy this week in Marrakech.

Brazil’s FM was in Morocco to attend a World Trade Organization (WTO) ministerial meeting on Monday (9) and Tuesday (10), in addition to having other appointments. The meeting with minister El Alamy was also attended by Morocco’s secretary of state for Foreign Trade Rkia Derham, and by Brazil’s ambassador in Morocco José Humberto de Brito Cruz.

The Brazilian embassy said online that El Alamy and Nunes went over ways to enhance and diversify trade and investments between Brazil and Morocco. Apart from the Morocco-Mercosur deal, Brazil is working towards an Agreement on Cooperation and Facilitation of Investments (ACFI) with Morocco.

The framework agreement entered into by Morocco and the Mercosur in 2008 provides for the creation of conditions and tools for a free-trade area to be put in place. Although that should have been the start of negotiations, the talks haven’t been conducive to the deal’s completion so far.

Brazil in the WTO

At the WTO ministerial meeting, the Brazilian FM spoke for the strengthening of the multilateral trade system, and for actions to be taken for the liberalization of trade and development. Nunes hopes measures to that end will be taken at the 11th WTO Ministerial Conference in Buenos Aires next December.

On Monday in Morocco, besides meeting with minister El Alamy, Nunes had breakfast with the Cairns Group, comprising countries that account for a combined 25% of the world’s agricultural exports.

Nunes also convened with authorities from Argentina, Switzerland and India, with the WTO director-general Roberto Azevêdo, with Canada’s minister of Trade François-Philippe Champagne, and with the European Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström. He discussed as Mercosur-Canada trade agreement with Champagne, and a Mercosur-European Union deal with Malmström.

*Translated by Gabriel Pomerancblum