Argentine politics, Patricia Bullrichmet with the Uruguayan president, Luis Lacalle Pouin a conversation in which they discussed various regional policy issues.
“I shared a long and interesting meeting in Montevideo with President Luis Lacalle Pou. A great friend of the Argentines,” Bullrich wrote when sharing a photo on Twitter where the former senator and current coordinator of the PRO government team, Federico Pinedo, also appears.
Through a statement, the Argentine politician also assured that “with President Lacalle Pou we think of a common policy open to the world and respect for human rights, where security, prosperity and integration are fundamental for the region.”
“We are going to do much better if we think big and not small, that is why I proposed to the president that, instead of thinking about small advantages for each country, we think about what we can do together. If we want to be a zone of peace for prosperity, we can think of a common regional security policy. To avoid port problems, it is better to think of regional ports and a common policy for the South Atlantic together with Brazil,” added the former Minister of Security during the government of Mauricio Macri, who now flirts politically with much tougher movements such as the of the libertarian Javier Milei.
“We also have challenges to democracy and drug trafficking. Our vision is that of greater regional integration, but open and not closed to the world. Without a doubt, we want to advance in trade agreements to open markets to our producers, starting with the EU (European Union) and continuing with Southeast Asia, India and North Africa. We must have a common policy towards China”, he specified.
Lacalle Pou is one of the leaders who have been most reluctant to ideas to strengthen Mercosur and, in fact, has advanced alone in the negotiation of a Free Trade Agreement between Uruguay and China, leaving aside the route to the community block.
With this move, the Lacalle government breaks the rules of MERCOSUR, the South American bloc made up of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay (Venezuela is suspended and Bolivia is in the accession process).
now he’s alone
Now, more than ever, Lacalle remains isolated in his attempt to detach Uruguay from the bloc, since he was only partially accompanied by the Brazilian president, Jair Bolsonaro, who suffered a defeat in his bid for re-election against former president Luis Inácio Lula da Silva.
Lula is more akin to the unity of MERCOSUR and another slightly smaller block, UNASUR, which is made up of Bolivia, Guyana, Suriname and Venezuela, but which until 2018 also had Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Paraguay and Peru, whose presidents – at that time mostly right-wing and conservative – suspended their participation “in the absence of concrete results that guarantee the proper functioning of the organization.” In that same year, Colombia announced that it was definitively leaving the organization.
Uruguay left in 2020 by decision of Lacalle Pou himself.