Irish MPs rejected the proposed EU-Mercosur trade deal in a symbolic vote in parliament Wednesday.
Opposition party Sinn Féin proposed a motion that savaged the agreement as “a bad deal for Ireland and the planet,” and called on the government to vote down the deal at EU level. The motion also urges Dublin to “immediately begin building a coalition across the EU to ensure that this deal is rejected.”
EU negotiators reached a political agreement with leaders from the Mercosur bloc of Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay last month, bringing 20 years of stop-start trade talks to a close. But the agreement has faced a backlash from Irish farmers who fear competition from cheaply produced South American goods, with thousands protesting outside the parliament earlier this week.
The deal still wont be ratified for likely another one to two years. But the non-binding vote signals trouble ahead in the approval process, as the agreement still needs backing from EU governments, the European Parliament and some 40 national parliaments across Europe.
The Irish text calls on Dublin to “consider this motion as binding on this and future governments.”
The motion passed by 84 votes to 46, a parliament spokesperson confirmed, including with support from the Fianna Fáil party, which props up the ruling Fine Gael with support in parliament.
The motion highlighted worries about potential environmental damage to the Amazon rainforest and concerns about food safety standards in South America.
It also expressed concerns that weak safeguards in the deal would lead to the destructionRead More – Source