The European Union’s trade deal with the Mercosur countries will only be ratified when progress is made on climate change, deforestation and food safety standards, according to an official in Emmanuel Macron’s office on Tuesday.
The French official, who refused to be identified in accordance with government rules, said the deal was not acceptable as it currently stands and must meet the commitments of the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement.In Brasilia, President Jair Bolsonaro’s office has rejected claims the trade deal encourages deforestation. “Brazil has already shown that it is able to increase its production of beef, soybeans and corn while reducing deforestation,” he said in a statement, adding that France’s accusations were justified by protectionist practices.
Ahead of an EU summit starting Thursday, the French official also said the UK’s internal markets bill was undermining the country’s credibility in Brexit negotiations. The bill has been criticized by EU officials for contradicting commitments made by the UK in the Withdrawal Agreement.
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– With the help of Rachel Gamarski
(Add the Brazilian government’s statement to the third paragraph.)