Third Session of the Economic Partnership Dialogue Between the Ministry of External Relations of Brazil and the U.S. Department of State
Released by the Bureau of Economic, Energy and Business Affairs
The Ministry of External Relations of Brazil and the U.S. Department of State held the third session of the Economic Partnership Dialogue on October 29-30, 2008, in Brasilia, to further strengthen and expand economic and commercial cooperation between the two countries. This meeting built upon the positive results of the first two sessions, held in Brasilia on December 13, 2007, and in Washington, DC, on March 5-6, 2008. The Parties highlighted the depth and breadth of the U.S.-Brazil relationship, and reiterated that the Dialogue plays an important role in promoting economic cooperation and addressing the challenges posed by globalization and the present international economic situation. Toward this end, the Parties explored the following issues:
Cooperation for Development and Social Inclusion: Both countries agreed on the importance of promoting social inclusion and social justice as a key goal of economic development. Considering previous experience with technical cooperation in both countries, in various fields, both Parties, through their respective Cooperation Agencies, agree to consult and to explore possibilities for making our cooperation activities abroad as collaborative as possible. Both parties noted the success of their biofuels cooperation and agreed to try to identify an initiative in the area of social inclusion of a similar dimension and importance. They agreed as follows:
The Parties agreed to strengthen the dialogue on how to accomplish the Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) established by the General Assembly of the UN in September 2000.
The Parties agreed on exploring possible cooperation on the eradication of child labor in Developing Countries.
Haiti: The Parties expressed their conviction that their joint cooperation with Haiti, also including the biofuels initiative and Brazil’s role in MINUSTAH, recently renewed with the support of both countries, can significantly help that country enter a virtuous cycle of job creation and sustainable growth. The Parties explored possibilities for cooperation with Haiti within the framework of the U.S. Haitian Hemispheric Opportunity through Partnership Encouragement Act of 2008 (HOPE-II). The Brazilian side reported that Brazil is considering the creation of a preferences program which would provide enhanced market access to Haitian exports. The Parties also agreed to explore synergies and complementarities between their respective preference programs, to maximize benefits for Haiti. In this regard, they noted with satisfaction that government officials and private sector representatives of both countries will meet in December in Washington to discuss opportunities for enhanced cooperation under the HOPE II program.
Civil Aviation: The Parties recalled the positive results of the bilateral meeting held in Washington on June 25-26, which led to the creation of 49 additional weekly passenger frequencies, most of which will cover new destinations in Brazil, such as Belo Horizonte, Fortaleza, Manaus, Recife and Salvador. They noted with satisfaction that U.S. carriers decided to take advantage of all 21 additional weekly frequencies available for this year. They praised the creation of new opportunities in the cargo sector, which will facilitate the access of Brazilian carriers to the Asian market. They pointed out that the enhanced offer for both passengers and cargo will contribute to strengthening exchanges and ties between Brazil and the United States.
Infrastructure: Itamaraty reported the results of the road shows on the Brazilian Growth Acceleration Program, which took place in Atlanta, San Francisco and New York in June, and expressed appreciation for the support extended by the U.S. Government. The Parties agreed to encourage enhanced discussions on opportunities for investments in infrastructure in both countries, initially in the oil sector and in port dredging. They also encourage business missions to explore such opportunities.
Import Safety: The Parties noted with satisfaction that representatives from over 10 Brazilian and American government agencies have been working together to strengthen collaboration and communication between both countries to ensure that imports meet their respective standards for safety and quality. They recalled that this joint initiative builds on state-of-the-art standards and practices and uses a scientific risk-based approach to identify and stop unsafe food and products before they enter either country. Efforts under consideration include reviewing existing regulations and practices to enhance national, regional, and local coordination. The Parties also pointed out that Brazil and the United States have had productive import safety discussions over the past several months, including the September 5 import safety working group meeting in Washington, DC. They agreed that both governments would continue the discussion on how best to address the safety of imported food and products without imposing unnecessary barriers to trade. In this regard, they noted with satisfaction that Brazil’s National Institute of Metrology, Standardization and Industrial Quality (INMETRO) and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding on October 22 to exchange information and carry out programs of mutual cooperation. Finally, the Brazilian side proposed to set up a bilateral working group to identify areas of cooperation involving product recalls, possibly including procedures for swift mutual notification whenever a hazardous product is detected by either party and for voluntary suspension of exports of such products to the other party. The U.S. side took note of the Brazilian proposal.
Agriculture: The Parties took note, with satisfaction, of the positive results of the meeting of the Consultative Committee on Agriculture, held in Brasilia on May 19-20. They have agreed to continue their dialogue on issues related to agriculture, in particular those concerning the enhancement of agricultural productivity in developing countries. The Parties also discussed ways to improve the participation of developing countries in the meetings of the Codex Alimentarius Commission.
Joint Commission on Science and Technology Cooperation: The Parties welcomed the ongoing technical preparatory talks for the next meeting of the Joint Commission on Science and Technology Cooperation, to be held in 2009. The Parties also noted, with satisfaction, the positive results of the second meeting of the Working Group on Public Health, which took place on October 6-7, in Washington, DC.
Innovation: The parties welcomed the Joint Commission on Science and Technology Cooperation as an appropriate forum for the development of a cooperation program on innovation, with the goal of supporting specific projects in areas of mutual interest and with the active participation of research institutions and the private sector of both countries. Moreover, the Parties expressed their interest in exploring possible synergies between these initiatives and those that have been considered by the Brazil-U.S. CEO Forum and under the dialogue between the U.S. Council on competitiveness and the Movement for a Competitive Brazil.
Telecommunications and Internet Governance: The parties exchanged views on the issue of mutual recognition of test results in the telecom area. The Brazilian side agreed to present a paper with information on its possibilities in that respect, taking into account existing legal constraints. They also confirmed both countries’ interest in engaging in discussions on the management of critical internet resources, at the third Internet Governance Forum (IGF) meeting, to be held in Hyderabad, India, from December 3 to 6.
Investment: The Parties were briefed on the technical discussions on investment policies held on October 29. They agreed to continue with their informal dialogue at the next session of the Dialogue.
Distinctive Products: The U.S. side reiterated support for the recognition of cachaça as a distinct Brazilian product in the U.S. market and presented an update on recent developments on the issue. The Brazilian side reported on possible ways of addressing the more recent U.S. request related to Bourbon and Tennessee whiskey. The Parties also agreed to push for the timely implementation of solutions to both matters.
Sectors: The Parties welcomed the success of the seminar between the textile industries of both countries held in April 2008, in Washington. Among its positive outcomes, the seminar launched the proposal of using third markets to bring together the textile industries of Brazil and the United States. The Parties also discussed possible initiatives in other areas, such as the aeronautics industry, and will consider holding a similar event in this area. They agreed to explore possibilities of enhanced contacts in information technology services. Finally, they pledged to support other similar initiatives between the private sectors of their two countries, in the belief that the pursuit of synergies and complementarities can boost economic growth, generate jobs and strengthen the ties of friendship between Brazil and the U.S.
Bilateral Tax Treaty: The parties welcomed recent progress achieved in bilateral discussions on a tax treaty.
OECD: The parties continued their discussion of OECD issues, with a focus on energy and innovation.
The Parties agreed to meet again in the spring of 2009.