Dáil debates

Wednesday, 10 July 2019

EU-Mercosur Trade Agreement: Motion [Private Members]


3:45 pm

Photo of John BrassilJohn Brassil (Kerry, Fianna Fail) | Oireachtas source

I am speaking in support of the motion. The Minister said:

I am not here to defend the Brazilian President, Mr. Bolsonaro, nor would I attempt to do so. However, the Mercosur countries, including Brazil, will have to fully implement the Paris Climate Agreement as part of this deal ... Should Brazil walk away from the Paris Agreement or fail to meet its obligations, then this deal falls. It is as simple as that.

I ask the Minister to change that and simply say that if Brazil walks away from the Paris Agreement, the EU-Mercosur deal will not start. I assure her that Brazil has walked away from the Paris Agreement. Its Prime Minister is a climate change denier. He has said global warming is a plot. He has right-wing attitudes on all issues such as same-sex marriage and homosexuality. In no way will he meet the requirements of the Paris climate accord. He has not done so to date and will not do so in the future. We should not even contemplate this deal until that country and its leader come into line, which will not happen in the first place.

The Minister also said: "The Government has absolutely fought to achieve the best deal possible for our farmers." I have not met a single farmer who agrees with that statement. If the agriculture community in its entirety is telling me and everybody else that this is a bad deal for farmers, we should not be signing up to it. We should be gathering allies in the European Union - something we should have been doing for the past four years - to prevent this deal from going through. The single biggest issue on our agenda is climate change and we are already turning our backs on it.


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