Arantza Gomez Arana
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The second attempt to negotiate the association agreement
in The European Union's policy towards Mercosur:

From the moment the European Union and Mercosur stopped their negotiations there was not progress or a real intention to re-start the negotiations again until 2010. Officially the EU and Mercosur “continued” negotiating the Association Agreement but it is fair to say that after such a failure at the last minute in October 2004, both sides becoming cautious in their hopes for a successful agreement. Considering that the negotiations failed publicly it is understandable to expect some years of “healing” before considering a new attempt.

One more time, the right momentum was necessary to facilitate the re-launching of the negotiations. The economic environment was completely different from 2004. At this moment Europe is the one recovering from a financial crisis and from a weak Eurozone, while in Latin America this international crisis did not have that much of an effect. However in 2004 Brazil and Argentina were recovering from the economic crisis of the late 1990s early 2000s. The negotiations between the EU and other Latin American regional groups or individual countries were being successful. At the same time a third major investor and trader became an important piece of the puzzle, China. To some extent this could be seen as a better scenario for a successful agreement between both regions. The facilitator of the re-launching of the negotiations was one more time the Spanish presidency of 2010. Since then, several meetings have taken place between the EU and Mercosur, the last one in mid-June in Brussels 2015.

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