Negociation of trade agreement with US has begun, says minister Guedes

Economy Minister Paulo Guedes said the process of negotiating a trade agreement between Brazil and the United States has begun, according to "Agência Brasil". Guedes received that country's Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, on the afternoon of Wednesday (31) and said it was clear that negotiations are officially open.

“It was bound that what was just a thought now is this: We are already officially starting negotiations with the United States. When we finished [the meeting], Marcos [Troyjo, Secretary of Foreign Trade and International Relations at the Ministry of Economy] asked if we were officially in talks. He [said]: 'Certainly. We want it. '

Guedes said other countries began to see Brazil's willingness to gradually open its market and expressed a desire to start a series of talks. “When Brazil announced that it wants to increase its degree of integration, Brazil entered the field. Then came the Americans talking. ”

The minister said the deal will go through arrangements from side to side to meet the interests of both countries. “We want to send auto parts and they have to send wheat. Then they say 'let my wheat in' and we say 'let my auto part in'. But the scale is much larger, ”the minister explained, in a simplified way, about how trade between the two countries will take place.

The government avoids talking about deadlines to complete the negotiation, but talks about closing an “ambitious” deal with the world's largest economy. According to Troyjo, Brazil needs to take advantage of the current “favorable environment” to advance negotiations with the US. This conjuncture, according to him, is composed, among other factors, by the converging political alignment between the presidents of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro; from the United States, Donald Trump; and from Argentina, Mauricio Macri.

Macri's disposition is important, as are other Mercosur presidents, because all trade agreements involving tariff changes must pass through the bloc. This is because Brazil already participates in a customs union, which is Mercosur.

Non-tariff agreements, such as those on intellectual property, telecommunications and regulatory convergence, may be conducted between the two countries without Mercosur participation. “In our conversation with Secretary Ross, we agreed to engage in both possibilities,” said Troyjo.

Post: Marina Carvejani