Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Toivakka to attend the meeting of EU Trade Ministers in Brussels

Ministry for Foreign Affairs 26.11.2015 16.59
Press release 262/2015

Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Lenita Toivakka will participate in the European Union Foreign Affairs Council (Trade) meeting in Brussels on Friday, 27 November.

The main themes of the meeting will include the situation concerning the World Trade Organization’s Doha round of negotiations before the WTO Ministerial Conference in December, progress of the transatlantic trade and investment partnership (TTIP) negotiations between the United States and the EU, the free trade agreement negotiations between the Mercosur countries and the EU, and the situation of the EU’s negotiations in Asia. The Council is also to adopt conclusions on the Commission’s new trade strategy introduced in October.

The Council is expected to review the progress of the Doha round of negotiations before the WTO Ministerial Conference to be held in December. The negotiations will continue in Geneva, and the EU aims to work in a constructive way to ensure results in Nairobi.

“The EU and Finland still support bringing the round to completion,” emphasises Minister Toivakka. “However, at the same time, we must ensure that the multilateral trade agenda is updated to meet new needs to remove hindrances to trade.”

In the meeting, the Council will receive the Commission’s status report on the free trade agreement negotiations between the EU and the USA. The next round of negotiations will be organised in early 2016. Finland continues to emphasise the ambitious objectives in opening the market for public procurement in the USA in, for instance, the marine sector.

The ministers will discuss the continuation of the agreement negotiations between the EU and Mercosur (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Venezuela). The negotiations were started in 2000 but have been intermittently discontinued. Finland has a constructive approach to the negotiations and hopes that as a result the export and market access of Finnish companies to the countries in the area will be facilitated.

More information: Director General of the Department for External Economic Relations Markku Keinänen, tel. +358 (0)295 351 460, Diplomatic Adviser to the Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Marja Koskela, tel. +358 (0)40 352 04 63.