What Happened: French President Emmanuel Macron has threatened to block a free trade agreement between the European Union and the Common Market of the South (Mercosur) over Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro's poor environmental performance, Bloomberg reported Aug. 23.
Why It Matters: Macron's comments highlight the significant roadblocks to the finalization of an EU-Mercosur free trade agreement after the French president previously chided Brasilia on its stance on combating climate change. The upcoming G-7 summit could indicate the level of international support for Macron after he pushed to include the issue on the meeting's agenda.
Background: Before his election last year, Bolsonaro promised to develop Brazil's Amazon region and boost the country's agricultural sector. However, the Brazilian government has come under increasing criticism for encouraging profound deforestation to benefit its powerful farming industry, leading to a dramatic rise in wildfires this year.