Yesterday, U.S. Department of Commerce Secretary John Bryson co-chaired the 7th annual U.S.-Brazil CEO Forum meeting at the White House in efforts to boost our commercial ties with Brazil and continue opportunities to grow the U.S. economy.
The Secretary was joined by Assistant to the President and Deputy National Security Advisor for International Economic Affairs Michael Froman, Fernando Pimentel, Brazil’s Minister of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade, and Gleisi Hoffmann, Brazil’s Presidential Chief of Staff.
Together with 24 CEO’s from the United States and Brazil, the coalition worked to provide joint recommendations to the two governments on ways to strengthen the U.S.-Brazil economic relationship and advance bilateral trade.
Secretary Bryson praised the team on achieving key goals in their economic relationship, and encouraged further opportunity for even greater collaboration on trade investment, infrastructure, strategic energy, education and innovation. Secretary Bryson also announced that he will travel to Brazil for the next meeting this year.
The U.S. and Brazil have a long history of partnership. For example, the U.S. was the first nation to recognize Brazil’s independence in 1824. When President Obama visited Brazil last year, he spoke about “the values we share, the hoped we have in common, and the difference we can make together.”
During the Forum, Secretary Bryson joined President Obama in introducing and welcoming Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff to the U.S. President Rousseff’s admirable past has helped make Brazil what it is today. Having had many responsibilities and key titles, her accomplishments have helped form one of the world’s most vibrant and fast-growing nations. Secretary Bryson also credited the remarkable leadership of President Rousseff for the economic progress between the U.S. and Brazil.
A lot was accomplished during the Brazilian Presidential visit. The U.S. and Brazil signed the Aviation Partnership Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), a joint priority of the Forum. The Aviation Partnership MOU will provide a coordinated and structured vehicle between the U.S. and Brazilian aviation sectors to address mutual aviation priorities, share expertise on industry best practices, enhance technical capacity and develop technology solutions to aviations sector challenges, among other priorities.
Achievements of the Forum also include progress on visa reform, the Agreement of Trade and Economic Cooperation (ATEC) signed last year, and greater cooperation on energy seen with the U.S.-Brazil Strategic Energy Dialogue launched August 2011. The Forum also expressed support for President Obama’s 100,000 Strong in the Americas initiative and President Rousseff’s Science Without Borders program.
The U.S.-Brazil CEO forum supports President Obama’s National Export Initiative (NEI) to double U.S. exports by the end of 2014. Brazil is a key market under NEI, as the United States’ eighth largest trading partner with $74.3 billion in bilateral merchandise trade in 2011.
Secretary Bryson was honored to participate in the forum, and to play a role in helping to strengthen the bonds between the U.S. and Brazil to ensure the economic prosperity of both nations.