Mexico and EU Upgrade Their Trade Agreement
By admin April 23, 2018


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Mexico and the European Union reached an agreement on April 21st, 2018to escalate the terms of their Free Trade Agreement, which was originally signed nearly two decades ago. As the United States decides to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and impose high tariffs on imported steel and aluminum products in an attempt to protect its domestic jobs, Mexico and the European Union decided to expand their trade in several areas such as agriculture.

The European Commission said in a statement on the same day that under the new agreement, the EU would exempt some tariffs of its agricultural products and increase exports of cheese, milk powder, pork and chocolate from Mexico. Meanwhile, Mexico will ensure that 340 types of EU-featured food and beverages are protected from imitation. For example, only sparkling wines from northern France’s champagne-producing regions can use the name of alcoholic beverages with the words “champagne.” The agreement is subject for approval by the 28 EU governments and the European Parliament. And, European and Mexican representatives will continue to discuss the details to finalize this agreement by the end of this year.

“Mexico and the EU worked together and reached a mutually beneficial outcome. We did it as partners who are willing to discuss, to defend their interests while at the same time being willing to compromise to meet each other’s expectations,” said European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.

After Trump’s inauguration in January 2017, he sought to renegotiate NAFTA with Mexico and Canada. The Trump administration then announced in early March that the US began to levy 25% and 10% tariffs on imported steel and aluminum products respectively starting from March 23rd, 2018. Though the EU and Mexico have been given temporary exemptions, they are still gearing up to find other solutions.

According to Reuters, such a move would reduce Mexico’s economic dependence on the United States; for the EU, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership Agreement between the US and Europe has been hampered by the EU’s need to promote open markets and free trade with other like-minded economic partners. The European Union and Mexican trade volumes have grown by an average of 8% a year since the agreement was signed. Of course, the new agreement not only closes the tie between Mexico and the EU, but also sends a strong message to the world that it is important to maintain a multilateral trade system and keep the market open.

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