Spain assuming the EU Council presidency in July could generate “new momentum” for European Trade Policy, especially in relation to trade agreements with Mexico, Chile and Mercosur.

This is according to statements from Portugal’s Prime Minister António Costa, whilst at the closing of the 34th Iberian summit in Lanzarote, who highlighted the significance of the six-month Spanish presidency term in boosting relations with partners.

Costa said that Spain’s presidency “may be an opportunity for the European Union to give a new boost to its trade policy, namely by concluding agreements with Mexico, Chile and even Mercosur.”

During the summit, Costa and Spain’s Prime Minister, Pedro Sánchez, talked about issues that may take priority on the EU Agenda with Spain at the helm.

Both Costa and Sánchez again underscored their agreement regarding key EU dossiers, such as economic governance and energy market reform, Euractiv reports, two files deemed “necessary” that “may come to a good end” under Spain’s presidency.

Over the past few years, Spain and Portugal have worked alongside each other within the European Union and emphasised the “Iberian solution”, according to Sánchez and Costa.

This curbed gas prices for electricity production and led to the creation of the gas pipeline project to transport hydrogen between the Iberian Peninsula and France.

The Portuguese PM also stressed the “common effort” made by both countries towards a “green reindustrialisation,” which will bolster their economies as well as strengthen the “strategic autonomy of Europe.”

In regard to “strategic autonomy,” Spain intends to give momentum to the debate during its six-month term as the head of the EU Council. In addition, this is also due to be one of the key issues in the spotlight at the EU summit, set to take place in Granada on 6th October.

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