February 1, 2017
The European Union (EU) and Mexico announced that they will hold two additional negotiating rounds before the summer as part of an accelerated negotiation schedule for a new, reformed Free Trade Agreement.
Last year, the EU and Mexico initiated negotiations to update the existing Free Trade Agreement (FTA) from 2000. Global trade patterns have changed substantially during the sixteen-year period, pointing to the need for a broader and more far-reaching FTA.
The dates of the upcoming rounds (April 3-7 and June 26-29) were agreed by the EU's Commissioner for Trade, Cecilia Malmström, and the Minister of Economy of Mexico, Ildefonso Guajardo. As part of this new schedule, fixed during a phone conversation, the two also agreed to meet in Mexico City between these rounds to take stock and push negotiators for further progress.
In a joint statement following their phone call, Commissioner Malmström and Minister of Economy Guajardo said: "We will take our trade relations fully into the 21st Century. We will be able to boost growth, making our firms more competitive and widening choices for consumers while creating jobs. Together, we are witnessing the worrying rise of protectionism around the world. Side by side, as like-minded partners, we must now stand up for the idea of global, open cooperation. We are already well underway in our joint efforts to deepen openness to trade on both sides. Now, we will accelerate the pace of these talks in order to reap the benefits sooner."