Mercosur summit ready to kick off at Puerto Iguazu
Presidents of all four Mercosur members (Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, and Paraguay) will convene Monday in Puerto Iguazu in the Argentine northeastern province of Misiones for the 62nd bloc summit, also attended by dignitaries of the bloc’s associate members.
During the event, host Alberto Fernández will pass on the pro-tempore presidency of the alliance to Brazil’s Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.
It will be the first time since 2019 that all four leaders attend the gathering. In addition to Fernández, Lula, Luis Lacalle Pou (Uruguay), and Mario Abdo Benítez (Paraguay), also present will be Paraguay’s President-elect Santiago Peña, and Bolivian President Luis Arce Catacora plus representatives of Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Peru, and Suriname.
The Summit’s agenda will kick off Monday with the ordinary meeting of the Common Market Council (CMC), led by Argentine Foreign Minister Santiago Cafiero, and his colleagues from the other member states and Bolivia.
Economy Ministers of Mercosur, Bolivia, and associated States will also hold a separate encounter Monday, which shall include Central Bank presidents.
On Tuesday, at 10.30 am, the Plenary Session of Heads of State will be held, with Alberto Fernández explaining Argentina’s work during the last 6 months as pro tempore president of the bloc, which includes hosting the tenth Mercosur Business Forum, where issues such as biotechnology, the transition to sustainable mobility in the automotive sector, the production of medical equipment and the development of medicines in the health sector, the integration of advertising services in the audiovisual sector, gender, and trade were addressed.
Argentina has also closed its bilateral chapter in the negotiations to deepen the Mercosur-Israel Free Trade Agreement and has promoted discussions with other Latin American countries such as the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, and Honduras in addition to promoting talks with the United Arab Emirates.
In 2022, Mercosur’s total trade with the rest of the world amounted to US$ 752.6 billion, reaching a historical high.