New Challenges for Association Agreements EU-Latin America and the Caribbean: IV. Workshop

The EU-LAC Foundation together with the Fundación Carolina organised the fourth Workshop of the joint project "Network of Association Agreements between the European Union and Latin America and the Caribbean", which took place on June 24.

The two foundations have agreed to carry out a comprehensive study on the network of Association Agreements between the European Union and Latin America and the Caribbean. As a result of this study, a series of virtual workshops are held from 20th of May to 1st of July 2021 with the participation of the main stakeholders in each of the Association Agreements (governments, officials from both regions, experts, parliamentarians, private sector and civil society organisations).

The fourth workshop presented the progress of the study we have been carrying out on the EU-Mercosur Agreement with a presentation by Prof. Gerardo Caetano (Professor at the Universidad de la Republica, Uruguay). The EU-Mexico agreement is in its final phase, nevertheless the success of reaching a trade agreement in June 2019, after twenty years of negotiations, has been marred by difficulties in ratification in both the EU and Mercosur. In the EU, several member states have defined a position that is more or less adverse to the final approval of the Treaty. For its part, Mercosur has returned to situations of conflict and diversity of opinions on the future of the bloc, which do not augur well either.

The initiative aims at reviewing the mapping of the association agreements between both regions to identify to what extent their ratification, modernisation and full use can contribute to a better international insertion, in economic matters and in the international relations of each party. The study also looks at the transitions that must be undertaken in the EU and Latin America in aspects such as sustainable development, digitalisation, and social cohesion.