Brazil asked to block Israel FTA - Palestinian report

Israel's foreign trade with Brazil totaled $1.4 billion in 2008.

The "Palestine Monitor" website reports that Brazil's Chamber of Deputies Committee on Foreign Relations and National Defense has recommended to the Congress not to ratify the free trade agreement between Mercosur and Israel until “Israel accepts the creation of the Palestinian state on the 1967 borders”. The Chamber of Deputies is the lower house in the Brazilian Congress.

Mercado Common del Sur (Mercosur) is the trading bloc of Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Venezuela, aimed at lifting trade barriers between the member states. According to the "Palestine Monitor", Mercosur is the world's fifth largest trading bloc, and Israeli exports to Mercosur countries totaled $600 million in 2006.

The Central Bureau of Statistics states that Israel's foreign trade with the five Mercosur companies totaled over $2 billion in 2008. Imports totaled $545 million, including $294 million from Brazil, $150 million from Argentina, and $700,000 from Venezuela. Exports totaled $1.36 billion, including $1.17 billion to Brazil (mostly fertilizers and agrochemical products), and $125 million to Argentina.

Israel has worked hard for Mercosur countries to ratify the free-trade agreement, and focused these efforts on its primary member, Brazil. In 2005, then-Minister of Industry, Trade and Labor Ehud Olmert met Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva to win his support for the agreement. Last month, Minister of Foreign Affairs Avigdor Lieberman flew to Brazil to urge ratification.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on September 15, 2009

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2009

Twitter Facebook Linkedin RSS Newsletters גלובס Israel Business Conference 2018