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Macron says the EU-Mercosur deal cannot fly without ‘mirror clauses’

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Euractiv | 27 February 2023

Macron says the EU-Mercosur deal cannot fly without ‘mirror clauses’

By Paul Messad

There can be no EU-Mercosur deal without mirror clauses that would force producers from both sides of the world to respect the same environmental and health standards, French President Emmanuel Macron told farmers in Paris this weekend.

Over the weekend, Macron attended the International Agricultural Show in Paris, where he discussed the EU-Mercosur deal struck between the bloc, Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay, focussing on ambitious and comprehensive trade.

“An agreement with the countries of the Latin American continent is not possible if they do not respect the Paris agreements, as we do, and if they do not respect the same environmental and sanitary constraints that we impose on our producers,” said Macron.

The agreement cannot be accepted without “mirror clauses, ” which would address the issue of ensuring that traded products respect the same environmental, social and societal rules, without specifying how he wishes these to be integrated into the agreement.

Macron also positioned himself head-on against those like Brazilian President Lula da Silva “who want to resume negotiations.”

Macron’s stance was welcomed by Marie-Pierre Vedrenne, a French MEP from the Renew group (centre) and vice-chair of the European Parliament’s International Trade Committee (INTA).

For her and many of her colleagues, the agreement is unacceptable, even with an “additional declaration” containing non-binding environmental measures, as proposed by the European Commission.

“A simple additional declaration [to the agreement] will not be sufficient,” said Vedrenne on 23 January at a hearing of EU Trade Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis.

In the meantime, the European Commission is expected to present its “additional declaration” to the agreement this week.

 source: Euractiv