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First MERCOSUR - Singapore round of negotiations

Friday, 26 April 2019
Information for the Press N°: 

The 1st Round of Trade Negotiations between MERCOSUR and Singapore took place in Buenos Aires on 22-26 April, 2019.  The Argentine and MERCOSUR delegation was headed by the Director of International Trade Negotiations, José María Arbilla,  while Singapore's delegation was headed by Chief Negotiator Francis Chong, Director of the Emerging Markets Division of the Ministry of Trade and Industry.

Both parties addressed different issues related to the strengthening of trade relations, such as access to goods markets, sanitary and phitosanitary measures, border cooperation and trade promotion, service trade, investments and the interaction between micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs).

This is the first trade negotiation between MERCOSUR and a member of the Association of Southeast Nations (ASEAN). The agreement seeks balanced and effective access to each party's market of goods, services, investments and government procurement. In addition, Argentina and MERCOSUR hope this agreement with one of the main logistical hubs in Asia will become a gateway for our exports to Southeast Asia. Singapore is a major investor at the global level. Therefore, a trade agreement can help attract capital from that area to the economies of our bloc.

Singapore represents an interesting market for Argentina in view of its GDP, its per capita income, its sophisticated market and its role as a net food importer.  In this regard, in 2018, Argentina's exports to Singapore included goods such as Patagonian toothfish, frozen poultry, whey and lemons, among others.  In turn, ASEAN as a group stands out as one of the main destinations for Argentine exports during the last couple of years.