Mexico, Europe agree to work more closely together to fight financial crisis

14:43, December 12, 2009      

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Legislators from Mexico and Europe signed a communique on Friday, agreeing to work more closely together to create a safer global financial environment to fight the financial crisis.

After the signing ceremony, European Parliament deputy Ramon Jauregui Atondo said, "Due to the global financial crisis, a better regulatory system is an urgent necessity," stressing that "greater state intervention is needed."

Jauregui, who headed a 14-member European delegation which arrived in Mexico City Wednesday night for a two-day meeting, highlighted the need for financial regulators from Europe and Mexico. Those regulators should close ranks to check rating agencies and state controls on possible "toxic" bonds like the famous sub-prime mortgage bonds that triggered the financial crisis.

According to Mexican Senator Jose Guadarrama Marquez, leader of the Mexican delegation, the meeting also discussed ways to diversify Mexico's economy, for Mexico's exports are overwhelmingly based on the U.S. market.

"Our dependence on the United States has been very bad for us during the current global financial crisis," Guadarrama said, adding that "the agreement with Europe is very different from that with the United States and Canada."

Around 80 percent of Mexico's exports, most of them consumer goods, are shipped to the United States under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) signed in 1994. Next to the United States and Mexico, NAFTA's trilateral trade bloc also includes Canada.

Both legislators praised Mexico's free trade agreement with the European Union, now in its ninth year, but stressed that Mexican business people have not availed themselves of it enough.

"Mexico is not using the free trade agreement as much as it could to export to Europe," Jauregui said. "Small- and medium-sized companies have not been informed enough about this opportunity," he added.

The Mexican and European parliamentary delegations will meet in April 2010 to prepare their suggestions, which will be debated at the next Latin America-European Union Summit scheduled for May in the Spanish city of Santander.

The Mexican and European legislators have been meeting every six months since the beginning of 2005.

Source: Xinhua
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