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Brazil to Use Chinese Visit for Business Deals

06/18/2014 - 09h30

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FLÁVIA FOREQUE
RENATA AGOSTINI
FROM BRASILIA

The Brazilian government will use the state visit of the Chinese leader Xi Jinping, in July, to make and close business deals as well as unlock the economic agenda between the two countries.

There is now a concern to diversify sales to the Asian giant, the main export destination of the country since 2009, when China took the place of the United States as the largest buyer of Brazilian products abroad.

"There is emphasis on the sale of commodities. With many eggs in only one basket, the country suffers from fluctuations," says ambassador Francisco Brasil de Holanda, director of the East Asia department at the Foreign Ministry and responsible for part of the preparations for the Chinese delegation visit.

Soybeans and iron ore accounted for over 70% of what Brazil sold to China last year.

Thus, besides strengthening diplomatic relations with the partner, one of the priorities is ultimately facilitate the sale of a 40 Embraer aircraft to the Chinese market.

Contracts were signed in 2011, but so far there has been no official authorization for the operation.

The Brazilian government wants to expand the contact between businessmen of the two countries. It is hoped that the delegation of Xi Jinping will also bring important Chinese executives.

"The Brazilian producer still looks too much towards its own belly. By 2020, more than 100 million Chinese will leave poverty. It is a huge market," said the Brazilian ambassador.

POTENTIAL

One of the areas in which Brazil sees great growth potential is the creative industry, with increased sales of graphic, audiovisual, design and fashion industries.

According to the Foreign Ministry, among the topics to be addressed during the visit should be also the beef sale authorization, blocked from late 2012 due to news of one case of the disease known as "mad cow" in Paraná.

Although being an isolated case and the result coming from a genetic mutation, which removed the risk of contamination to other animals, China maintained the barrier ever since.

The Chinese market for beef is still small, but the increase sales to Hong Kong last year, which serves as the gateway to Asia, shows how profitable can be the end of the embargo, says Brasil de Holanda.

SYMBOLISM

There is still the expectation that there will be a confirmation of Brazilian investment in the Asian country. The truck maker Marcopolo, for example, is waiting permission to install a factory in China.

The visit of Xi Jinping, who will attend the summit of the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, China, India and South Africa) countries and to watch the World Cup final at the Maracana, has a strong symbolic character.

This visit, the first in his leading position, will mark 40 years of relations between Brazil and China.

Translated by SIMONE PALMA

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