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The Russia–Brazil Business Council, led by Andrey Guryev, and the Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency Sign Memorandum on Mutual Support for Exports and Investments

29 November 2019
The Russia–Brazil Business Council, led by Andrey Guryev, and the Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency Sign Memorandum on Mutual Support for Exports and Investments

Moscow - The Russia–Brazil Business Council, led by PhosAgro CEO Andrey Guryev, and the Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency have concluded a memorandum on mutual support in the areas of exports and investment.

Within the scope of the memorandum, which is aimed at expanding trade and investment between the business communities of Brazil and Russia, the parties will promote the establishment of relations between companies, industry associations and chambers of commerce in both countries. Interested domestic companies will receive assistance in establishing and expanding their business in the partner country.

“Today, we have signed a major agreement that marks the resumption of active dialogue between the business communities of our two countries. It lays the foundation for joint work to establish the necessary conditions to ensure that goods produced in both countries have full access to markets in Russia and Brazil.

“I am convinced that the partnership between the Russia–Brazil Business Council and the Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency will be a fruitful one. And this will ultimately benefit consumers, who will be able to buy high-quality, environmentally friendly goods from Brazil and Russia at affordable prices”, said Mr Guryev, Chairman of the Russia–Brazil Business Council, at the signing ceremony.

Roberto Escoto, Investment Manager at the Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency (Apex-Brasil), expressed confidence that the agreement formalising relations between the Agency and the Russia–Brazil Business Council would help expand economic ties between the two countries.

The signing took place during a meeting between Onyx Lorenzoni, Chief of Staff to Brazil’s President, and representatives of Russian business.

At the event, held in the format of high-level talks, Mr Lorenzoni, Mr Escoto and Veronica Sanchez, Executive Secretary for the Investment Partnership Programme, gave a presentation about investment opportunities in Brazil for Russian business.

The talks began with opening remarks by Brazil’s Ambassador to Russia, Tovar da Silva Nunes; Russia’s Deputy Minister for Economic Development and Chairman for Russia to the Intergovernmental Russian–Brazilian Cooperation Commission, Timur Maksimov; and the Chairman of the Russia–Brazil Business Council, Andrey Guryev. “The fact that such a high-ranking Brazilian delegation came to Moscow highlights the great importance that our country attaches to relations with Russia. Our countries’ economies are complementary. A good example of this are the phosphates mined in the Murmansk region, and potassium mined in the Urals, which enrich Brazilian farmland and are returned to Russia in the form of soy, meat and other agricultural products produced with their help in Brazil.

“A multitude of opportunities are opening up in Brazil for Russian companies with a global reputation. We are counting on the support of the Russia–Brazil Business Council in terms of expanding trade and economic cooperation between Russia and Brazil. [The Council’s] Chairman, Andrey Guryev, has made a considerable contribution to the creation of a new dynamic in business relations between our countries”, said Brazilian Ambassador da Silva Nunes.

Mr Maksimov, Russia’s Deputy Minister for Economic Development, noted that Brazil is one of Russia’s strategic foreign economic partners.

“At purchasing power parity, the economies of Russia and Brazil exceed a combined total of USD 8 trillion. Together, the two countries occupy one fifth of our planet’s land mass and are home to more than 360 million people. Clearly, relations between countries with this sort of potential should involve more active economic cooperation”, said Mr Maksimov.

The Deputy Minister added that agriculture is an important point of complementarity between the economies of Russia and Brazil in terms of the supply of Russian mineral fertilizers – the main growth driver for Russian exports to Brazil – and of Brazilian finished products to the Russian market. He added that cooperation in agriculture could provide an excellent impetus for development of comprehensive economic cooperation between the two countries.

Mr Maksimov thanked the Russia–Brazil Business Council for its work to revitalise bilateral relations, noting that its Chairman, PhosAgro CEO Andrey Guryev, was constantly paying a great deal attention to the development of relations between the two countries.

In his remarks, Mr Guryev emphasised that Brazil had chosen a good time to hold talks on investment opportunities for Russian business in Brazil, i.e., immediately after a delegation of Russian business had returned from Brazil, where the Russia–Brazil Business Forum had been held as part of the BRICS Summit.

“The Business Forum that took place in Brazil two weeks ago brought together a wide range of participants and lasted an unprecedented 12 hours. During our meetings, we heard an important message from Brazil: they are waiting for Russian private business and state-owned corporations in Brazil. They are waiting for us as equal business partners, whose products can enter into a fair, honest contest with products made by competitors from other countries. In response, the Russian business community indicated its interest in participating in investment projects in Brazil”, said PhosAgro’s CEO.

According to Mr Guryev, participation in talks by representatives of major Russian companies confirmed the interest on the part of Russian business in Brazil. He agreed with the optimistic assessments of prospects for bilateral trade that Brazil expressed during the Russia–Brazil Business Forum.

“There is potential for exponential growth in trade between Russia and Brazil, which amounted to USD 5 billion in 2018. I am convinced that, through joint efforts, we will succeed in our efforts to expand access channels to the Brazilian market for Russian companies. For our part, we will help our Brazilian partners in their work in the Russian market”, said Mr Guryev.

In his remarks, Mr Lorenzoni, Chief of Staff to Brazil’s President, thanked Mr Guryev for the invitation to come to Moscow, which was offered during the BRICS Summit in Brazil.

“We came here to invigorate the development of our relations with Russia. We are very happy that you are also ready to participate in the new Brazil that is being created by the administration of President Jair Bolsonaro, which is combating corruption and implementing important reforms and development programmes”, said President Bolsonaro’s Chief of Staff.

Mr Lorenzoni invited Russian business to invest in a Latin American country in which “great opportunities for investment are opening up”.

“Investors who come to Brazil will see very good returns”, Mr Lorenzoni stressed.

The Brazilian delegation told representatives of Russian business about the Investment Partnership Programme, which calls for the privatisation of state-owned enterprises worth more than USD 500 billion and the implementation of 117 investment projects in various sectors of the Brazilian economy, including the oil and gas industry, electronics, mining, ports and airports, and railways and highways.

The discussion on economic cooperation between Russia and Brazil continued during meetings that Mr Lorenzoni held with Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak and the CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), Kirill Dmitriev, in which Mr Guryev also participated.