Varadkar warns EU president of Mercosur threat for beef


Varadkar warns EU president of Mercosur threat for beef

19 June 2019
Leo Varadkar, along with French President Emmanuel Macron and the Polish and Belgian Prime Ministers, has written to Jean Claude Juncker raising concerns over ongoing Mercosur talks.

An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is among a coalition of EU leaders who have written to the president of the European Commission Jean Claude Juncker, warning of the destabilising effect a deal Mercosur could have on the European beef sector.

The letter, seen by the Irish Farmers Journal, is also signed by French President Emmanuel Macron, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel. 

The letter calls on President Juncker to allow no further increases to the quotas offered for beef, poultry, sugar and ethanol in Mercosur discussions. The last beef offer made to Mercosur countries was 70,000t, although an unofficial offer of 99,000t is reportedly on the table. 

The letter also asks that the quota be broken up between high-value and lower-value beef. 

This, they say, would ensure “the import of high quality parts is kept to a minimum”.