Principles of cooperation with partner countries

Learn more about the BMEL's priority countries for cooperation and the principles, objectives and instruments of bilateral cooperation with these countries.

Principles of cooperation with South America

The priority countries for cooperation with South America are Brazil and Argentina.

Brazil and Argentina rank among the six largest agricultural producers in the world and are the world’s largest net agricultural exporters. As the two most important countries in Mercosur – the Southern Common Market – they are the BMEL’s key partners on the continent. Brazil is the world’s biggest producer and exporter of sugar, beef and coffee and the second most important producer and exporter of soya. Outside the agricultural sector, Brazil is also a major player in international commodity trading. Argentina is the biggest exporter of soya flour and soybean oil as well as biodiesel. The EU and the Mercosur member states are currently negotiating a Free Trade Agreement. In light of the region’s crucial importance, the German government adopted a strategy on Latin America and the Caribbean in July 2010. The BMEL is actively involved in the implementation of this strategy.

Due to the otherwise limited amount of land potentially available elsewhere in the world and the necessary yield increases required in sustainable production, these two countries will make a decisive contribution to world food security. As suppliers of raw materials, they will remain significant players on the international markets while acting in compliance with climate, environmental and species protection. With the third-largest forest stands in the world, Brazil is the focus of international interest in the forestry sector – particularly thanks to its Amazon forests. The country plays an important role in shaping international forest policy.

The main targets of cooperation include the promotion of bilateral and multilateral trade and economic partnership, and political dialogue on questions of world food security and sustainable production. The aim here is to represent common positions in international bodies and expand the cooperation in agricultural research.

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