“Mercosur is a brand that is integrated with the world in a jointly and consistent way; the region has better negotiation possibilities and more opportunities to obtain advantages in the markets if we attend the negotiation tables together,” stated the Secretary for International Economic Relations, Jorge Neme, at the opening of the 6th Mercosur Business Forum he chaired on 26 May, which gathers representatives of the public and private sectors to identify and design strategies for the different productive sectors.
At the beginning of the meeting, held virtually, Neme stated that “the region needs better links and relations with markets and, although we have an ambitious foreign affairs agenda, it is necessary to add new regions and countries keeping in mind that we must do so together, although the negotiation process may include pace changes or flexibilities according to each country’s sensitivities.”
As part of the 30th anniversary of the Treaty of Asunción and during Argentina’s Presidency Pro Tempore, the 6th Mercosur Business Forum (the last one having been held in 2014) presents the work done by three new committees: Industry, Agriculture and Knowledge-based Services; Neme highlighted the work done by the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), which provided substantial support for the work of the private sector work and offered rapporteurship on the documents produced.
“These are three highly dynamic sectors in our economy and societies that can significantly contribute to the recovery process that our society demands,” stated Neme, who holds office at the Foreign Ministry headed by Felipe Solá. He also noted “the need to align technical regulations in such a way as to foster trade flows and make our productive sectors more competitive.”
Joined by the Undersecretary for Mercosur and International Economic Negotiations, Rossana Surballe, Neme, and addressing ECLAC and industrial chamber representatives, Neme noted that “it is important for all the regional productive sectors to have a space for discussion and coordination in order for them to provide the necessary inputs for public policies and become indispensable actors in the regional integration process.” He also welcomed the inclusion of the gender question in the forum, so that “women may have an opportunity to participate in the decision-making process”.