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Brazil hopes to sign FTA soon

The Statesman, India

Brazil hopes to sign FTA soon

Statesman News Service

13 April 2007

NEW DELHI, April 13: A free trade agreement (FTA) is expected to be concluded soon between India and the MERCOSUR group of South American countries, visiting Brazilian foreign minister, Mr Celso Amorim, today indicated. “It is partly our fault that the bilateral trade between India and Brazil is still very small around $3 billion,” Mr Amorim said at an interactive session organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).

Brazil is yet to sign the MERCOSUR-India agreement as it had to pass through a complex process under the country’s presidential system, the Brazilian minister pointed out. He was, however, confident that it would be signed before President Lula visited India around June this year or right after.

“There is no political problem,” Mr Amorim clarified. “It is only a procedural question under our Presidential form of government.”

The Southern Common Market of MERCOSUR groups Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Venezuela, and Paraguay. Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru are currently associate members.