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With its presence at Expo 2020 Dubai, Brazil wanted to be a part of the world fair's legacy and forge stronger economic ties with the UAE, top government officials have said.
Brazil's relationship with the UAE has helped the country facilitate international trade, expand connectivity and create logistic networks, thereby adding value to the global economy.
During a media trip to the Latin American country, top government officials told Khaleej Times that their government is pro-business and more committed than ever to opening the Brazilian market to the UAE.
They also highlighted that Brazil is already the UAE's largest regional trading partner, and Expo 2020 is key to their development strategy, providing an ideal platform to accelerate business.
Augusto Pestana, CEO of Apex-Brazil, said: “We have a diversified economy and we are keen on making sure that more foreign investment flows into Brazil. The good thing about Expo is that we are talking about a mega event and an event that’s happening in the Middle East, the UAE, for the first time."
Pestana added that visitor footfall to the Brazil pavilion has been impressive - a remarkable feat considering the Covid-19 pandemic.
"We have a fantastic opportunity here. Dubai is really unique. It’s a huge hub, when you think of airports, sea ports, all other investments and how the leaders are reinventing the country," he said. "It’s a very good business place, very centrally located for the Middle East, for South Asia, East Asia, Europe and Africa.
"Additionally, Dubai is one of the global references for all types of fairs across sectors of the economy. We want to make sure that our presence at Dubai Expo 2020 is also a way to accelerate business.”
In 2020, Brazil’s trade flow with GCC countries reached $8.8 billion, which makes the economic bloc their fifth largest trading partner, with the UAE and Saudi Arabia being the main destinations for Brazilian exports and origins of imports.
Brazil is the largest destination for UAE products in the Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) region, with exports of $595 million in 2019. Two-thirds of these exports are petroleum, while the remaining are fertilisers and gaseous substances.
"In total, we are expecting over 50 occasions across the UAE, including Abu Dhabi, where we will have our presence either directly or with our partners. With these 52 trade events or fairs, we will have at least half a billion dollars in new contracts from all our clients across different sectors of the economy," Pestana said.
The pavilions, he noted, are a good venue for clients to experience Brazil.
"Despite the pandemic and despite the delay in the Expo 2020 due to it, the event has become a symbol of ‘new moment’. So, it’s a very strong message of ‘connection’ that the UAE is providing to the world and we want to be a part of this legacy. We want to enhance this relationship," he said.
Due to Brazil’s continental dimensions and diversity, the country is rich in investment opportunities, industry experts pointed out.
From agribusiness to forest management and oil to major infrastructure projects, the country has used partnerships with private companies to leverage its growth.
“At Expo 2020, our galleries are changing exhibitions all the time. We want to make sure that all 27 states in Brazil, every sector of the economy is exhibited," Pestana said.
For instance, Itaipu, a huge hydroelectric dam between Brazil and Paraguay, follows the principle of sustainable development.
"It has the Itaipu Hydroelectric power plant and is the largest generator of clean and renewable energy in the world, which can showcase their best in the gallery. In total, we will have at least 45 different events that we are promoting along with our public-private partners. We want to reflect what we are, which is very plural and diverse," he said.
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