Thursday, 5 March 2020
Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation
442. To ask the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation her plans to inform the European Commission and other relevant bodies of the decision made by the Thirty-second Dáil to reject the EU-Mercosur trade agreement; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [2923/20]
The Government acknowledges the result of the Motion that was passed in the Dáil on 11th July 2019 and we have committed to conducting a comprehensive, independent Economic and Sustainability Impact Assessment (ESIA) of the finalised EU-Mercosur Trade Agreement. In that regard, in January 2020, the Government commissioned ‘Implement Consulting’ to undertake that Impact Assessment which consists of two equally important and complementary components, namely a robust analysis of the potential economic benefits as well as a robust sustainability impact assessment (including social, human rights and environmental impacts) that the trade agreement could have in Ireland and the Mercosur countries of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay. Equally, a wide-ranging consultation process will ensure the engagement of all relevant stakeholders in the conduct of the Impact Assessment. This Impact Assessment is designed to assist Government in formulating its position on future ratification of the Agreement, once the EU Commission presents the final legal texts and it is anticipated that the Impact Assessment will be concluded in advance of the November 2020 meeting of the Trade Council where it is expected that the EU-Mercosur Agreement will be submitted for consideration by Ministers.