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The EU and Chile formally launched today in Brussels the negotiations to modernise the existing EU-Chile Association Agreement.
The modernisation of the Association Agreement is an expression of both Chile and EU's willingness to deepen the already excellent bilateral relations and expand to new areas of collaboration. Both parties share values of democracy, rule of law, human rights and gender equality and are engaged in multilateral fora and work together to promote them as well as sustainable developmentthe fight against climate change and the promotion of innovation as transversal elements of their modernised Agreement.
We will remain ambitious and forward looking in ensuring we equip ourselves with a progressive and resourceful modernised Association Agreement. Cooperation in areas such as space, research social issues, including decent employment, education, training and opportunities for the youth, ocean governance, digital policy, and disaster preparedness, among many others, shall be further reinforced in the modernised Agreement and will enable us to break new ground.
In the trade field, our existing Association Agreement has been a great success and has increased trade flows between us substantially. However, the agreement is now 14 years old and does not address the full range of important trade and investment issues. In these new negotiations we have also the opportunity to conclude a trade agreement of the highest calibre that covers all issues, including those that reflect our shared values such as trade and sustainable development, help for small and medium-sized companies, anti-corruption, and trade and gender.
We are looking forward to continuing our fruitful discussions in future rounds.