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July 1, 2019


Irish farmers concerned EU-Mercosur deal could cause surge in beef imports

 

A recent trade agreement between the EU and Mercosur, the regional alliance of Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay, has made Ireland's beef farmers worried that the EU could see a surge in beef imports.


In response, Irish Minister of State for Housing Damien English said that the deal can be "tweaked," adding that it has "a couple of years ahead before it is finalised."


"[Irish] Minister [for Agriculture] Michael Creed has very clearly said on our behalf that we are concerned at the beef element of this," English commented.


Fianna Fáil, a conservative political party in Ireland, had also urged the government and Creed to resolve issues pertaining to what it described as an unacceptable deal, the party's spokesman said.


In addition, Phil Hogan, the current EU Agriculture Commissioner and former Irish minister, admitted the EU-Mercosur agreement could pose "some challenges" to European farmers.


"The European Commission will be available to help farmers meet these challenges. For this agreement to be a win-win, we will only open up to agricultural products from Mercosur with carefully managed quotas that will ensure that there is no risk that any product will flood the EU market and thereby threaten the livelihood of EU farmers," Hogan said.


- The Irish Times

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