At the end of October 2022, the Brazilian people voted President Bolsonaro out of power, and Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in. Supporters of the European Union (EU) Mercosur Free Trade Agreement (FTA) are hopeful that Lula’s election might allow the deal to be revived. But many NGOs say that regardless of who holds the Brazilian Presidency, the contents of the FTA remain problematic.
The FTA aims to increase trade in products known for their harmful impact on people and forests, which is incompatible with the transition to a just and green economy.
Trade impacts peoples’ daily lives, lands and security, yet this deal was hatched behind closed doors, with record low transparency.
It must therefore not be revived without a renegotiation that includes consultations with the communities who know how to put people and forests at the heart of trade relationships.
“Not just about trade” is a joint briefing from Fern, the Amazon Environmental Research Institute (IPAM) and the Instituto Socioambiental (ISA). It summarises the key themes that emerged from a series of workshops and interviews about the FTA with representatives from local organisations, collectives, and Indigenous and traditional communities in Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay. It provides valuable insight into the positions and preoccupations of community members across Mercosur.
Indigenous, traditional and quilombola communities in Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina have something to say…
It is time to listen.