Speaking at the opening of the Hanover trade fair in Germany, Merkel and visiting Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto welcomed the agreement in principle that the European Union and Mexico reached on Saturday on a new free trade deal. It also incorporates commitments on tackling corruption in both the public and private sectors, and to climate change targets established under the Paris Climate Agreement. Among other things, the European Union and Mexico have committed to effectively implementing their obligations under the Paris Agreement on climate change.
The new deal, which has been under negotiation for nearly two years, upgrades a previous agreement signed in 1997 that was mainly focused on liberalising trade in industrial goods.
"Mexico and the EU worked together and reached a mutually beneficial outcome", boasted Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the unelected European Commission which acts as the bloc's executive and initiates all EU-level legislation. We did it as partners who are willing to discuss, to defend their interests while at the same time being willing to compromise to meet each other's expectations.
Such deal was made between Brussels and Mexico 21 years ago in 1997, which concerned manufactured goods.
For Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström, this is a "new chapter in a long and fruitful relationship" that gives a great boost to trade and job creation.
"We believe multilateral cooperation can add value for everyone and that's why we're advocating global trade that is as free as possible and which is based on common rules", she said in a thinly veiled dig at Trump, whose name she did not mention. Our commitment is to deliver benefits for our citizens at home through closer cooperation with our partners overseas.
Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan noted that the agreement is "very positive" for the agri-food sector creating new export opportunities.