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Colombia; European Union: Trade Agreement Ready to Be Signed in May

(Apr. 21, 2010) A trade agreement between Colombia and the European Union is ready to be signed by the parties, possibly on May 19, 2010, during the fourth summit, in Madrid, of the EU and Latin American and Caribbean nations. The agreement would open the EU market to rum, bananas, and sugar from Colombia free of tariffs; at present, they are practically totally excluded from the EU. Fish, rice, pork, and beef would also be allowed into the new partner's market. (Listo acuerdo comercial entre Colombia y la UniĆ³n Europea, EL ESPECTADOR, Apr. 12, 2010, available at

Dairy producers have opposed this agreement because they claim they will not be able to compete with the dairy imports from the EU, which have been heavily subsidized. The agreement's ratification in the EU Parliament is planned for the end of this year. (Id.)

The Green Party in the European Parliament is opposing the signing of this agreement because of the serious record of violations of human rights in Colombia, especially the large number of murders of union member that remain unpunished. (Protestan en Europa por el acuerdo comercial con Colombia, BILATERALS.ORG, Mar. 2, 2010, available at