First Meeting of the Joint Administration Comittee of the Preferential Commercial Agreement between Mercosur and Sacu

5 June 2017

The meeting took place on the 25th and 26th of May 2017, in Johannesburg. The MERCOSUR delegation was led by Argentina, in its character of PPTA; the SACU delegation was led by South Africa. MERCOSUR was represented by official representatives from Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. Uruguay was represented by its Ambassador in Pretoria.

MERCOSUR is an economic and political bloc created in 1991. The accord called for the free movement of goods, services, and factors of production between countries. Its signatories agreed to eliminate customs duties, implement a common external tariff (CET) of 35 percent on certain imports from outside the bloc, and adopt a common trade policy toward outside countries and blocs. Mercosur residents may live and work anywhere within the bloc. Trade within the bloc grew from $4 billion in 1990 to $108 billion in 2015.

MERCOSUR is an open and dynamic process. Since its inception, its main objective was to foster a common space that would generate commercial and investment opportunities through the competitive integration of national economies into the international market. As a result, it has established multiple agreements with countries or groups of countries, and also has  signed trade, political or cooperation agreements with a diverse number of nations and agencies on five continents.

The Agreement MERCOSUR SACU came into force on the 1st of April 2016 and contemplates the preferences for about a 1000 tariff lines for each chapter. The agenda for this meeting included an exchange of information on economic and trade arrangements; a revision on the implementation and functioning of the Agreement; regulation of the Joint Administration Committee; industrial cooperation and exchange of contact points; and the organization of Joint Trade Promotion Seminars for MERCOSUR-SACU Agreement.

It was agreed that the next meeting would be in 2018 in a place and date to be informed by MERCOSUR.

Embassy of Argentina in Pretoria, South Africa