Braexit? Bolsonaro’s Economic Guru Slams South American Customs Union

New Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro’s “economic guru,” Paulo Guedes, has suggested that the country could head for a ‘soft Braexit’ from the continent’s fledgling EU-like supranational organisation Mercosur, the ‘Southern Common Market’.

Following the EU model, Mercosur has recently established a parliament with direct elections scheduled for 2020. It has even proposed a single currency, the ‘Gaucho’. The Union consists of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Venezuela, although the latter has been suspended since November 2016.

Guedes, who is touted as becoming a “super minister” in Bolsonaro’s administration, has slammed the agreement and particularly its customs union, as bad for the economy, calling it a “cognitive prison.” 

“Am I only going to trade with Venezuela, Bolivia or Argentina? No. We will trade with the world, with more countries. We will do commerce. What if I want to trade with other countries?”

Brazil is a country of 210 million people. Leaving Mercosur’s customs union could be a game changer for boosting world trade…


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