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On Tuesday, in the debate "Citizen Dialogue", organised by the European Commission

"The day after Brexit, the European Union will need to be more united and have its future clear", says Luis Planas

Tuesday 10 September 2019

In relation to Brexit, Luis Planas explained that the government has drawn up contingency plans so that the different sectors can be ready and alleviate its effects. At any event, the acting minister highlighted the importance of the unity of the European Union the day after the withdrawal of the United Kingdom, and for it to have its future clear.

He thanked Commissioner Malmström, on behalf of the Government of Spain, for her efforts to conclude "a good agreement" with the MERCOSUR countries, "a strategic project that represents a qualitative leap in multilateral trade based on rules as advocated by the European Union and Spain".

For Luis Planas, the European Commission has negotiated, on behalf of the EU, a globally balanced agreement, and it is the intention of the Government of Spain for this balance to be reflected in the agri-food sector.

He explained that the Spanish trade balance with the MERCOSUR countries shows an annual deficit of 2.8 billion euros. In this situation, he considers that Spain has possibilities for many agri-food products (wine, olive oil, dairy products and some fruits and vegetables) to reach markets that would lead to greater balance under the agri-food heading.

The acting minister appreciates the legitimacy of the concerns from some sectors, and to that end has negotiated certain safeguard clauses and compensatory mechanisms. He also pointed out that the rules on the entry of products from the MERCOSUR region will be the same as the rules for the EU.

The acting minister also stated that the technical completion and parliamentary ratification of the treaty could take up to two years, to be followed by a transitory period of some 10 years that will allow sectors to adapt to the reality of MERCOSUR.

He stressed that EU rules that will apply to the entry of all products from third countries, as will the rules of phytosanitary products and those related to food standards, which have been strengthened this year with a new regulation on the examination of imported products. And in December, a strengthened control mechanism will enter into force on the entry of citrus products.

Non official translation