The European Union and Mexico will hold two additional negotiating rounds before summer as part of an accelerated negotiation schedule for a new, reformed Free Trade Agreement.
The dates of the upcoming rounds (3-7 April and 26-29 June) were agreed by Commissioner for Trade, Cecilia Malmström, and the Minister of Economy of Mexico, Ildefonso Guajardo. As part of this new schedule, fixed during a phone conversation, the two also agreed to meet in Mexico City between these rounds to take stock and push negotiators for further progress.
In a joint statement following their phone call, Commissioner Malmström and Minister of Economy Guajardo said: “We will take our trade relations fully into the 21st Century. We will be able to boost growth, making our firms more competitive and widening choices for consumers while creating jobs. Together, we are witnessing the worrying rise of protectionism around the world. Side by side, as like-minded partners, we must now stand up for the idea of global, open cooperation. We are already well underway in our joint efforts to deepen openness to trade on both sides. Now, we will accelerate the pace of these talks in order to reap the benefits sooner.”
Last year, the EU and Mexico initiated negotiations to update the existing Free Trade Agreement (FTA) from 2000. Global trade patterns have changed substantially during the sixteen-year period, pointing to the need for a broader and more far-reaching FTA. The purpose of this modernising process is to better mirror other ambitious trade deals that the EU and Mexico have negotiated lately.
Between 2005 and 2015, the yearly trade flow of goods between the two partners more than doubled (from €26 billion to €53 billion), against the backdrop of the existing Free Trade Agreement.