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Uruguay will apply in December to join the Transpacific Agreement

The Uruguayan government will present on December 1st its request to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), as informed this week by President Luis Lacalle Pou during a meeting at the Executive Tower with representatives of all political parties with parliamentary representation.

President Lacalle Pou seeks to give a new step to the impetus of his open-tourist agenda, which also includes negotiations with China for a Treaty of Free Trade and with Turkey.

The agreement with China, in particular, generated resistance from the Argentine president Alberto Fernández, while the elected president of Brazil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, has not yet expressed a concrete position on the matter.

Uruguay is preparing the next Mercosur meeting on December 5 and 6, which will take place in Montevideo.

Uruguayan, Uruguay will apply in December to join the Transpacific Agreement
President Luis Lacalle Pou along with Ministers Fernando Mattos and Omar Paganini during an official mission to Japan in late October (Photo internet reproduction)

WHAT IS URUGUAY LOOKING FOR?

By means of a possible entry into the Trans-Pacific Agreement, Uruguay would seek preferential conditions for access to markets such as Japan, where today Uruguayan beef enters with average tariff above 30%.

In this agreement, in what in which Mexico, Peru and Chile already take part for Latin America, Uruguay would also position itself alongside direct competitors in agricultural products such as Australia and New Zealand.

“The most important thing is that Uruguay continues to set an opening agenda for Mercosur that has been paralyzed for many years”, says Pablo Iturralde, president of the National Party led by Lacalle Pou.

Asked about how it could affect the link with other Mercosur countries, the leader said that the government understands that Uruguay “is qualified” to attend extra-block agreements.

However, this is not the position of Argentina. The government of Alberto Fernández manifested in more than one opportunity that, from its point of view, this type of initiatives undermine the foundational bases of the block.

The deputy of the Colorado Party, Ope Pasquet, says that his collectivity, a member of the officialdom, understands that it is convenient to enter the agreement, even though it was decided that Uruguay should wait for the assumption of Lula da Silva in Brazil to talk about the subject in a formal way.

Beyond this position, the definition given by Lacalle Pou is that the adhesion will be presented on December 1st.

With information from Bloomberg Línea

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