Experts say that integration has been further stifled as Mercosur`s economies continue to resort to protectionist strategies [PDF] and are reluctant to create value chains or regional production centres. Instead, Latin America`s traditional dependence on exports of low-value-added raw materials, particularly to China, continued during the commodity price boom of the 2000s. Many economists say this has contributed to disappointing trade growth in the bloc, which has declined since 1998 as a share of overall membership trade. For Spanish and European agri-food companies, the agreement provides for tariff reductions for wines, spirits, soft drinks, chocolate, dairy products, certain fruits and vegetables and olive oil. For sensitive agricultural products such as beef, rice, poultry and sugar, the agreement contains safeguard clauses, including plant protection and veterinary measures. The Committee will be both advisory and decision-making; even with the power to submit proposals. In particular, it will be empowered to follow the integration process and to keep the respective congresses informed; to take the necessary steps for the future creation of a Mercosur parliament; Organize subcommittees to address issues related to the integration process; Submit their recommendations to the Joint Market Council and the Group on the implementation of the integration process and the formation of the common market for the South; Make the necessary adjustments to harmonize the laws of the various Member States and submit them to the respective congresses; establish relationships with private bodies in each of the Member States, as well as with international agencies and offices, in order to obtain information and specialized assistance on issues of interest: establishing links with third-country congresses and bodies participating in regional integration programmes; Agreement between cooperation and technical assistance with public and/or private bodies, whether national, supranational or international. The committee is composed of a maximum of 64 members in office, 16 members per Member State and an equal number of substitutes appointed by the Congress of which they are members, and a term of at least two years.