Macron Threatens to Block Major EU Trade Deal if Brazil Doesn’t Do More to Stop Devastating Amazon Wildfires

  • With the raging fires in the Amazon still ongoing, world leaders like French President Emmanuel Macron are putting pressure on the Brazilian government to get the fires under control or Brazil will risk not having a huge trade deal with the EU ratified.
  • Macron said that Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro “had lied to him about his stance on climate change.”
  • A spokesperson for Macron said: “The president can only conclude President Bolsonaro lied to him at the Osaka summit.”
  • The spokesperson added: “In these conditions, France will oppose the Mercosur deal as it is.”
  • After 20 years of negotiations, “the EU-Mercosur trade deal reached agreement in principle earlier this year.”
  • Mercosur consists of a “trade bloc that includes Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, with Venezuela also a member but suspended since 2016.”
  • If the deal goes through, “it would be the largest trade deal struck by both the EU and Mercosur in terms of population.”
  • Environmental groups are pointing the finger at Bolsonaro’s policies, which they say have contributed to the fires, but the Brazilian president has dismissed the claims.
  • Scientists say the fires are “man-made” and say they are “linked to businesses looking to exploit the land,” which connects to Bolsonaro who ran on a pro-business platform.
  • UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson described the fires as “not only heartbreaking but an international crisis.”
  • Johnson said: “We stand ready to provide whatever help we can to bring them under control and help protect one of Earth’s greatest wonders.”
  • Additionally, “German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called the fire an acute emergency… shocking and threatening not only for Brazil and the other affected countries, but also for the whole world.”
  • The Amazon rainforest is one of the world’s largest producers of oxygen, but a record number of fires are currently threatening the vast rainforest.
  • On Friday, Bolsonaro said “that he was considering options for fighting the fires, including deploying the military.”
  • Bolsonaro has “accused Mr. Macron of meddling for political gain, and previously said calls to discuss the fires at this weekend’s G7 summit in Biarritz, France – which Brazil is not participating in – showed a misplaced colonialist mindset.”

Reference Links

  • BBC: Amazon fires: Brazil threatened over EU trade deal READ
  • EuroNews: ‘Our house is burning’: Macron urges G7 leaders to discuss Amazon fire READ
  • The Guardian: France and Ireland declare opposition to trade deal over Amazon fires READ
  • The Independent: Emmanuel Macron says he will block EU trade deal with Brazil over Amazon forest fires READ

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