Sustainable development in the Mercosur-European Union Association Agreement:

tensions and expectations


  • Vera Lúcia Viegas-Liquidato
  • Ivan Lucchesi Van Brussel


Soft Law; Hard Law; Sustainable Development; Jus Cogens.


This article offers an internationalist perspective on the environmental issue within interregional agreements, focusing on the European Union-Mercosur Free Trade Association Agreement, which is currently in the process of ratifications. We qualitatively analyze the history and evolution of international environmental law, the importance of the indicative origin of said legal discipline, and the dialogue of sources typical of Public International Law in order to highlight the strengths of Soft Law in the construction of a global paradigm of. Sustainable Development. We consider the aspects of environmental regulations, where the legal nature of the right to sustainable development is analyzed, as well as the limitation of the sovereignty of States in these issues; in conceiving it as a fundamental right of the human person and an international jus cogens norm. The sustainable development article of the Agreement is considered as a relevant point of analysis, and how it could have an impact on the dispute resolution mechanisms and procedures established by MERCOSUR and the European Union regarding disputes that may arise in relation to commercial activities that may affect the environment. The methodology was deductive, with bibliographic survey, analysis of jurisprudence and exegesis of normative texts.