Mon. Jul 22nd, 2024

Brussels, 17 July 2023

Today, High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell and Foreign Minister of Ecuador Gustavo Manrique, signed in Brussels, in the presence of the President of the Republic of Ecuador Guillermo Lasso, and on the occasion of the EU-CELAC Summit, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the agenda for enhanced political and sectoral dialogue and cooperation for the next decade.

High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell said:

“With today’s signature, we are strengthening EU-Ecuador long-standing relations. It will allow us to engage in a more structured relationship and to pursue cooperation initiatives in a wide range of areas of common interest, such as security, cooperation in multilateral fora, environment and climate change, digital transformation, the fight against drug trafficking and organised crime, migration and mobility, human rights and innovation.”

Foreign Minister of Ecuador, Gustavo Manrique, said:

“The presence of the President Guillermo Lasso during the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding denotes the importance that Ecuador gives to the enhancement of the relationship with the European Union. Said instrument represents a joint vision to improve the wellbeing of our people and the convergence of mutual commonalities that will allow deepening our political ties and shared interests in fields such as security, environment, economic and social matters, cooperation, in the path of establishing a strategic relationship in the near future”.

The Memorandum of Understanding identifies eight priorities to guide the development of EU-Ecuador relations:

  1. The environmental agenda, including the fight against climate change and the mitigation of its consequences, the protection and sustainable use of land and marine biodiversity, and the promotion of sustainable growth and circular economy;
  2. The economic and social agenda, including the promotion of sustainable and inclusive growth, the support of small and medium-sized enterprises and the bolstering of digital innovation;
  3. The scientific and educational agenda, including the promotion of academic development and research through university exchanges and scientific training centres;
  4. The development cooperation agenda, relating to social and humanitarian issues, including chronic infant malnutrition and general health;
  5. The security agenda, including the fight against transnational organised crime, illicit drug trafficking and production, countering terrorism and preventing violent extremism, the fight against harmful disinformation, and the promotion of cybersecurity;
  6. The migration agenda, and particularly the management of the migration crisis and its impact on Ecuador and the region;
  7. The promotion of investments for smart, clean, safe and secure links in the digital, climate, energy and transport sectors through the EU Global Gateway initiative.
  8. The multilateral cooperation agenda on global and regional foreign policy issues, in particular the protection of the rules-based global order.

Furthermore, the MoU opens prospects to develop a comprehensive bilateral political agreement in the future to complement the EU-Colombia/Peru Trade Agreement.

Background

The EU and Ecuador have been deepening and broadening their long-standing political, economic and cooperation ties in recent years, making of Ecuador one of our most reliable partners in the region. Ecuador’s bilateral agenda with the EU has intensified in all sectors, including trade, where bilateral trade has grown steadily since the entry into force of the trade agreement with the EU in 2017.

The EU is Ecuador’s first foreign direct investor and the third trade partner after the US and China. Ecuador exports to the EU amount to around 4 billion USD. Ecuador is a firm supporter of multilateral fora and regional integration, based on rules and respect for human rights, democracy and the Rule of Law. Ecuador is currently a member of the UN Security Council (2023-2024) and has been clear in its condemnation of Russia’s actions in Ukraine and supporting/co-sponsoring resolutions in the UN Security Council, the UN General Assembly and the UN Human Rights Council.

See also full remarks by the HR/VP Josep Borrell:

Ecuador: Remarks by High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell after the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding

Source – EEAS


Ecuador: Remarks by EU HRVP Borrell after the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding

 

Brussels, 17 July 2023

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Presidente [de Ecuador, Guillermo Lasso], estimado Canciller [de Ecuador, Gustavo Manrique], este es un momento importante para mí personalmente, porque esta Cumbre [UE-CELAC] es un objetivo clave de mi mandato. Y que tengamos la ocasión además de firmar acuerdos de cooperación bilaterales con varios países latinoamericanos, enriquece el momento.

Y usted, querido presidente Lasso, lo enriquece con su presencia.

Este Memorando de Entendimiento pretende reforzar nuestras relaciones y llevarlas un paso adelante.

Nuestras relaciones ya son buenas. Tenemos un exitoso acuerdo comercial en vigor y ya saben lo difícil que es establecer acuerdos comerciales hoy en día. El nuestro lo tenemos desde hace tiempo y funciona.

Creo que tenemos que avanzar hacia un acuerdo de cooperación más amplio, que vaya más allá de los temas estrictamente comerciales.

Estamos mandando una misión de expertos electorales para que, junto con ustedes, refuerce la transparencia del proceso electoral en el que están embarcados. Y que hemos seguido – créame presidente – con muchísima atención, preocupación e interés. Estamos a su disposición para hacer todo lo que se pueda para fomentar la confianza y el diálogo con el fin de proporcionar estabilidad y prosperidad a todos los ecuatorianos.

También quiero agradecer a Ecuador su permanente cooperación en los foros multilaterales. Especialmente en las Naciones Unidas, ahora que Ecuador ocupa uno de los asientos del Consejo de Seguridad, su papel ha sido importante. Y quiero reconocer la coherencia con la que Ecuador ha actuado frente a la agresión rusa a Ucrania. 

Quiero reiterar el apoyo de la Unión [Europea] a Ecuador frente a sus desafíos actuales, especialmente en relación con las consecuencias de “El Niño” y también en el ámbito de la seguridad.  

Presidente, ministro, ustedes pueden contar también con el apoyo de la Unión [Europea] y con nuestra solidaridad con los países que han acogido a tantos y tantos migrantes venezolanos – más que migrantes, refugiados. Es una palabra que refleja mejor su condición y las razones por las cuales ustedes tuvieron que acogerles.

Ecuador acoge a más de medio millón de estas personas. Y por eso en la Cumbre también hablaremos de buscar caminos para una solución a los problemas políticos en Venezuela.

Tenemos, como vemos, una amplia agenda en mente y este acuerdo debe servir para fortalecer nuestras relaciones. Ahora – como le decía antes, presidente – hay que bajar de las musas al teatro, de la retórica a la acción, e implementar lo que aquí nos proponemos hacer.

Gracias por haber actuado como notario mayor de esta firma.

Link to the video (a partir de 2:20): https://audiovisual.ec.europa.eu/en/video/I-244279  

Link to the press release:

Ecuador: Signature of Memorandum of Understanding for stronger bilateral relations with the EU

Source – EEAS

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