Matt Carthy welcomes reported collapse of EU-Mercosur trade deal
The Sinn Fein MEP for the Midlands North West, Matt Carthy, has welcomed reports that the EU Mercosur trade deal has collapsed. Carthy called on the Irish government to immediately examine its position on other trade deals which will damage Irish agriculture and the wider economy.
Matt Carthy MEP said:
“It seems that an EU trade deal with Mercosur countries is off the table at least for now; this will come as a great relief especially to Irish farmers who were on the cusp of being sold out by European negotiators at the behest of sectors such as the German car manufacturing industry.
“It comes as no surprise that transparency and food standards have being among the issues cited as leading to collapse in negotiations. It is mind boggling to think that the European Commission was prepared to offer Mercosur countries a 99,000T quota on beef in the weeks after several Brazilian factories were delisted due to sanitary concerns.
“However, nobody will be under no illusion that this latest development marks a change of tact on the part of EU trade Commissioner Malmstrom or her negotiators. They have never had the interests of farmers or rural communities at heart. The lucrativeness of the South American markets for the German automotive industry left agricultural access for south American produce a mere bargaining chip in these negotiations.
“Likewise it has been clear that Commissioner Phil Hogan and the Irish government continuously fail to protect Irish agriculture interests across a plethora of trade deal talks.
“While the news of the Mercosur talks collapsing will be welcomed in many quarters it is definitely a case of a battle won in an incomplete war. The collapse, if confirmed, will simply prove the success of mobilised opposition to a dangerous trade deal. Farming organisations, trade unions, small business organisations and citizens across the board must learn the lessons and campaign against other trade deals that serve only the interests of massive corporate multinationals.
“This week, for example, we have seen much fanfare on a EU Japan trade deal, the contents of which have been open to almost zero public debate. That is not good enough. The Irish government should carry out a comprehensive analysis of what the aggressive EU trade agenda will mean for our economy and specifically vulnerable sectors such as Irish agriculture”.