BEIRUT, Oct. 14 (Xinhua) -- Lebanese Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil said on Monday that Lebanon is ready to sign a free trade agreement with the Mercosur countries.
"There exist around 10 million people of Lebanese origin in the Mercosur countries, so it is natural to aim for good economic and social relations with them," Bassil was quoted as saying by Elnashra, an online independent newspaper.
Bassil's remarks came during his meeting in Beirut with representatives from Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay to discuss the steps that should be taken by Lebanon to join Mercosur.
Bassil said trade exchange with Mercosur countries in the past five years has reached 521 million U.S. dollars in imports and 21 million dollars in exports.
Mercosur, formally known as Southern Common Market, is a South American trade bloc of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay.