During his state visit to Uruguay, German President Joachim Gauck will advocate for a free trade agreement between the European Union and the South American economic community Mercosur. Free trade, conducted under fair and reasonable rules, could increase well-being and quality of life permanently, Gauck declared at a luncheon to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the German-Uruguayan Chamber of Commerce in Montevideo.
A free trade agreement between the EU and Mercosur, comprised of Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay and Venezuela, has been the subject of negotiations for years, without success. European countries are especially fearful of losses in agriculture resulting from the import of agricultural products from South America.
During a visit to a training centre in Montevideo, the president advocated for the dual vocational training model implemented in Germany. This system would also provide young people from disadvantaged social backgrounds with opportunities in the labour market. Gauck will be back in Berlin on Monday. He visited Chile from Monday to Thursday, then travelled to Uruguay. This was his third trip to South America as president of Germany.