Bolivia has been formally invited to join as a full member the largest trading bloc in Latin America, Mercosur.
The membership process is due to start at Mercosur’s next meeting in Brasilia, Brazil on December 6. Bolivia’s President Evo Morales is expected to attend though he has not made a public commitment to joining the trading bloc.
Bolivia is currently an associate member of Mercosur. Full members are: Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay (currently suspended) and Venezuela.
Known as the “Common Market of the South,” Mercosur was created in 1991 as an economic and political agreement among members to promote the free movement of goods, services and people among member states.
Mercosur’s primary interest has been eliminating obstacles to Latin America regional trade, such as high tariffs and income inequalities.
It is currently the fourth largest trading bloc in the world with a collective GDP of $2.9 trillion according to the Council on Foreign Relations.