The Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR), created in 1991, is formed by Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela, with Bolivia and Chile as the bloc's associate members.

The primary goal of Mercosur has been and is the integration of the four States Parties, through the free circulation of goods, services and production factors in a market of more than 180 million people, the establishments of a common external tariff, the adoption of a common trade policy, the coordination of macroeconomic and sectoral polices, and the harmonization of legislations of legislations in relevant areas.

Attracting investments is also one of Mercosur's main objectives. In a highly competitive international scenario, in which countries strive to grant incentives to investors, the creation of a customs union provides a very favorable framework for the attraction of capital. Even with all the difficulties derived from harsh international economic conditions and the problems resulting from the restructuring of domestic economies, Mercosur has been one of the world's leading recipients of foreign direct investment flows.