EU proposal alarms region’s agricultural exporters


The trade proposal cleared the European Parliament, shown above, and now awaits action by the European Council. (Photo courtesy of EU)

A preliminary agreement among European Union (EU) nations calling for an import ban on products linked to forest destruction is drawing applause from environmentalists while stirring deep concern in Latin American and Caribbean agricultural-export circles. Approved by the European Parliament and the EU’s 27 member states, the measure names goods whose production must be certified as not contributing to deforestation or forest degradation after Dec. 31, 2020. Among them are mainstay regional exports such as beef, soybeans, timber, palm oil, cocoa and coffee. The proposal, which must be approved by the European Council in order to take effect, has prompted meetings in foreign-affairs and agricultural ministries across Latin America and the Caribbean, EcoAméricas has confirmed in interviews with officials in the region. Agricultural producers, for their part, are questioning why the EU ban does not include an exception for deforestation that occurs within exporting countries’ legal limits, and... [Log in to read more]

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