After the conclusion of talks on an updated trade agreement between the EU and Chile, the Chair of the Trade Committee and the Standing Rapporteur for Chile made the following statement.
Bernd Lange (S&D, DE), Chair of the Committee on International Trade (INTA)
“It is good to see that there is a political conclusion on the trade part of the EU-Chile Advance Framework Agreement. I expect the final agreement to be submitted to the European Parliament as soon as possible, so that we can start our scrutiny of the agreement without delay and finalise the consent procedure before the end of the current legislature in mid-2024.
The new agreement contains many positive elements such as a historic stand-alone chapter on gender and trade, which was an explicit demand from the European Parliament. Apart from the values it enshrines and the possibilities it brings, it will contribute to a fairer and more equitable green transition for both partners. The agreement in principle is also a signal that the EU is willing to engage with likeminded partners in pursuit of sustainable and rules-based global trade.
Although I regret that it was not possible to include the EU’s new approach on trade and sustainable development (TSD) in the agreement, I welcome the strong commitment by Chile and the EU to review the agreement as soon as it enters into force in order to align it with the new TSD approach. This will ensure that the commitments on labour rights and environmental standards will be more effectively enforceable."
Samira Rafaela (Renew Europe, NL), INTA Standing Rapporteur for Chile
“I welcome the conclusion of negotiations between the EU and Chile on the trade part of the EU-Chile Advance Framework Agreement. The conclusion demonstrates the EU can work together with likeminded partners to advance fair, green, and values-based trade. I congratulate the negotiators on the political conclusion.
The modernised trade part will advance many aspects of the EU’s values-based trade agenda in cooperation with Chile. Through the new agreement, both parties will be able to address issues such as climate change, labour rights, gender equality, as well as human and indigenous rights. This was a specific demand from the European Parliament, and I welcome this inclusion. Furthermore, a review clause for trade and sustainable development will create an opportunity for both parties to incorporate the most advanced standards into the agreement in the future.
I am particularly pleased that the Commission listened to the call of the European Parliament for the inclusion of a dedicated chapter on gender and trade, the first ever in an EU trade agreement. Gender equality is one of the core values of the EU, and should be advanced at all stages and through all policies. This chapter, with ambitious commitments, will set a new precedent for gender equality through EU trade relations.”
The EU’s trade relations with Chile are currently governed by the 2002 Association Agreement. However, trade and investment relations have remained below their potential in recent years. Therefore, the EU and Chile started negotiations on the modernisation of the agreement in 2017 in order to bring the agreement in line with state-of-the-art trade and investment standards. Parliament outlined its preferences in a resolution in September 2017. The negotiations on the modernisation of the Association Agreement, now called Advance Framework Agreement, were officially concluded at technical level in October 2021. The agreement in principle was announced on 9 December 2022.