Download publication

Policy Contribution

The European Union-Mercosur Free Trade Agreement: Prospects and risks

After nearly 20 years of on-off negotiations, the European Union and Mercosur – a customs union covering Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay – in June 2019 reached a political agreement on a trade deal. But to derive the full benefits from the EU-Mercosur agreement, major reforms will be needed.

By: and Date: September 24, 2019 Topic: Global Economics & Governance

The quantifiable gains from the Free Trade Agreement between the European Union and Mercosur – Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay – are small on account of the small share of EU trade with Mercosur and the relatively modest ambitions of the deal in terms of liberalising agriculture in the EU and manufacturing in Mercosur.

Nevertheless, the agreement, if ratified and accompanied by reforms that strengthen competitiveness, could represent a major departure for Mercosur, pushing it towards an outward-oriented development strategy. The deal could also mark a significant step forward for the EU in its efforts to reform agriculture. The agreement faces a difficult ratification process, but is worth having and fighting for. Incorporating mechanisms to deal with environmental, especially deforestation, concerns will be particularly important. The agreement constitutes an insurance policy against further deterioration in the rules-based multilateral trading system.

View comments
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Opinion

The WTO is dead: long live the WTO?

Should the EU fight to save the WTO when the US seeks to dismantle it? We argue that the only way for the EU to decide that is to first understand the US’s strategy (as distinct from its tactics) and then make up its mind in terms of how much of a threat it perceives China to be.

By: Maria Demertzis Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: December 20, 2019
Read article More on this topic

Blog Post

Lessons from the China-US trade truce

The tentatively agreed deal between China and the United States temporarily stops a dangerous dynamic, yet it falls far short of the negotiating objectives of both sides. US trade policy has become a dominion of the executive branch guided principally by the President’s electoral interests. Meanwhile, China demonstrates its capacity to resist pressure: it will enact structural reforms at its own pace in line with its interests. Sadly, the deal confirms that the United States no longer feels obligated to follow WTO rules, and can induce others to do the same.

By: Uri Dadush and Marta Domínguez-Jiménez Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: December 19, 2019
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Podcast

Podcast

Appellate Body Politic

This week, the WTO's Appellate Body, the dispute settlement body, became inoperational: it no longer has the necessary number of judges to render verdicts. What does this mean for international trade and multilateralism? Are we now living in a world without dispute settlement? This week, Guntram Wolff is joined by Alan Beattie, the author of the FT's new Trade Secrets newsletter, and Alicia García-Herrero to discuss the crisis of the Appellate Body.

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: December 12, 2019
Read article More by this author

Opinion

Watch out for China’s currency in case of no-deal scenario

The U.S. and China’s negotiations on a phase-one deal seem to have stalled again. The market was already aware of the limited nature of the likely deal, but was still hoping for it. Against this backdrop, the investors have reacted negatively to the increased likelihood of not reaching a deal on December 15. If this is the case, the U.S. will apply additional tariffs on Chinese imports. The obvious question to address, thus, is, what can happen to China under such a scenario?

By: Alicia García-Herrero Topic: Finance & Financial Regulation Date: December 11, 2019
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Podcast

Podcast

Getting post-Brexit trade deals done

The UK goes to the polls on Thursday to decide who (and if) they want to "get Brexit done". But, as soon as Britain leaves, it will have 11 months to agree a trade deal with the EU. Is it possible? Nicholas Barrett is joined by Maria Demertzis and Niclas Poitiers to discuss post-Brexit trade deals with the EU and the USA.

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: December 10, 2019
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Blog Post

High noon at the Appellate Body

This blog post explains the working method of the dispute settlement body, and then discusses the objections the US has raised against the Appellate Body, and the implications of its potential demise.

By: Niclas Poitiers Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: December 9, 2019
Read article Download PDF More on this topic

External Publication

Manufacturing employment, international trade, and China

The decline in manufacturing employment is often seen as a major reason for rising inequality, social tensions, and the slump of entire communities. With the rise of national populists and protectionists in recent years, the issue has become even more prominent.

By: Uri Dadush and Abdelaziz Ait Ali Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: November 28, 2019
Read about event More on this topic

Past Event

Past Event

EU-Asia trade and investment connectivity

The Asia Europe Economic Forum (AEEF) was established in 2006 as a high level forum for in-depth research-based exchanges on global issues between Asian and European policy makers and experts. This year, the AEEF will be hosted by Bertelsmann Stiftung on 28-29 November, 2019 in Berlin, Germany, and it will focus on “EU-Asia trade and investment connectivity”.

Speakers: Aart de Geus, Guntram B. Wolff, He Fan, Alessia Amighini, John Beirne, Nicolaus Heinen, Jae-Young Lee, Cora Jungbluth, Alicia García-Herrero, Xin Yuan, Andreas Esche, Ken Wu, Sébastien Jean and Amb. Karsten Warnecke Topic: Global Economics & Governance Location: Bertelsmann Representative Office, Unter den Linden 1, 10117 Berlin Date: November 28, 2019
Read article Download PDF More on this topic

Working Paper

The state of China-European Union economic relations

More can be done to capture the untapped trade and investment opportunities that exist between China and the EU. China’s size and dynamism, and its recent shift from an export-led to a domestic demand-led growth model, mean that these opportunities are likely to grow with time.

By: Uri Dadush, Marta Domínguez-Jiménez and Tianlang Gao Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: November 20, 2019
Read about event More on this topic

Past Event

Past Event

The role of China in global value chains

This event looked at how the rise of China is affecting global value chains.

Speakers: Alicia García-Herrero, Seamus Grimes, Margit Molnar and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: Global Economics & Governance Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: November 18, 2019
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Podcast

Podcast

Cars, steel and national security: The EU-US trade spat

Guntram Wolff is joined by Alan Beattie, the author of the FT's new Trade Secrets newsletter, and by Andre Sapir, Bruegel's very own trade expert to discuss President Trump's tariffs and whether or not they're working

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: November 14, 2019
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Opinion

Why investors should temper optimism over a China trade rally

The economy is in worse shape than in 2015 and policies to boost growth are not as effective as they once were

By: Alicia García-Herrero Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: November 6, 2019
Load more posts