BRASILIA – Brazil and Uruguay concluded on Wednesday an agreement establishing free trade in the automotive sector, a pact Uruguayan Foreign Minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa said should be a model for the Mercosur bloc.
The accord was signed in Brasilia by Nin Novoa and Brazilian counterpart Mauro Vieira, along with the respective industry ministers: Carolina Cosse of Uruguay and Brazil’s Armando Monteiro.
Bilateral trade in vehicles and parts was $633 million in 2014 and totaled $550 million during the first 10 months of this year, Vieira noted.
The treaty sealed Wednesday is “part of a process of confidence” within Mercosur, which unites Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina and Venezuela, he said.
The agreement will bring “great benefits” to Uruguay’s burgeoning auto parts industry and provide for increased insertion of Uruguayan firms in the Brazilian market, Nin Novoa said.
Establishing “an absolutely free and fluid trade” in the auto sector will allow both countries to expand their economic horizons and points the way toward “genuine productive integration,” Monteiro said.
Joining the officials for the ceremony were Brazilian and Uruguayan auto executives.
Brazil’s auto industry has an opportunity to carve out an “extremely important niche” in the Uruguayan vehicle market, Luiz Moan, president of the Brazilian automakers association, told EFE.
Brazil is already in talks with Peru about a similar accord, according to Moan, who said he and his colleagues in the industry hope to see agreements reached with nations in the Caribbean and Africa.