31st May 2016

Today's announcement of talks to update and extend the EU's trade deal with Mexico has been welcomed by Conservative MEPs.

The current deal came into effect in 2001 and since then digital commerce and the service sector have both grown in importance. UK trade with Mexico has boomed in recent years, with exports increasing by more than 140% since 2009.

South West MEP and Conservative Group Leader Ashley Fox hopes that local small and medium sized companies (SMEs) in particular will benefit from the renegotiation.

Mr Fox said: "Updating the trade agreement with Mexico is a key aspect of the EUs development of it's relationship with North America. As we near completion of a deal with Canada, while continuing to push hard on TTIP, Mexico should also be updated to reflect what is happening with these other partners. “

"The EU needs to ensure that businesses of all sizes in the South West feel the benefit from this venture. We have willing partners in Mexico, for whom the EU is it's second largest export market, and we should address issues other than just tariffs that hold up trade, such as non tariff barriers, particularly for SMEs.”

EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström and Mexico's Secretary of Economy, Ildefonso Guajardo Villareal, announced the launch of negotiations to update the EU/Mexico trade and investment partnership in Brussels this afternoon.

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