Can Free Markets Fix It All? These Times Are Over. Says Brazil President

Lula gets Don Quijote prize in Spain Talking in Spain, Brazilian President, Luiz Inรกcio Lula da Silva, noted that the days when emerging economies were dependent on the IMF (International Monetary Fund) IMF "are over" and so are over the days when Latin America had no voice in international affairs,

"The story that free markets fix it all is over," he added in an interview with the Spanish daily El Pais.

The Brazilian president in Spain to be honored with the Don Quijote Prize for the promotion of Spanish language added that he was convinced that the current financial crisis would open the way for deep changes in global finances and world balances.

Lula said that Brazil is gradually becoming an emerging regional and global power and emphasized he was convinced that free trade "was the best antidote for the current crisis."

"From Spain I'm leaving for India to talk with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh about the Doha round on free trade, which is paralyzed basically because of a disagreement between the United States and India over agriculture," said the Brazilian leader.

"I'm going to tell my good friend Singh that there could be no better or more positive gesture to begin to overcome the current financial crisis than to conclude the Doha round," he underlined.

The Brazilian president insisted that the Doha round is not an economic problem, "it's political."

Before leaving for India and after having been honored in Toledo together with the Mexican writer Carlos Fuentes, Lula said that Brazil was ready to use foreign reserves and buy bank shares if necessary to defend its financial system.

He recalled Brazil has over US$ 230 billion in reserves it can draw on and is in a stronger position to fight the international financial crisis than any of the world's large economies.

"All of this is money we can use, in the event it was necessary; we are prepared to free up some resources in our reserves, so as long as they pay us with bonds, so that reserves are maintained."

Lula said resources would principally be for Brazilian banks that operate abroad. Asked if Brazil's government was prepared to buy bank shares, the president said it would depend on the situation.

"If there was a bank in a position that we considered that it was necessary, first we would get another bank to buy their portfolio, like Bank of Brazil already bought three. And it has the ability to buy more," said Lula da Silva.

"Second, if it was necessary the government would lend money to the central bank as a lender of last resort. What I think is that we should remain alert."

"Of all the big countries, BRICs and developed, that which faces the least risk is Brazil" he underlined.



  • Show Comments (6)

  • Falupa

    What is he going to do? Buy up companies? This is ridiculous. I can’t believe that Lula is doing this again. Doing this will just limit personal freedom.

  • ch.c.

    Joao !
    On Ice-land :
    but this was the fourth day, therefore the market re-opened !
    It should be Russia not China for the 5 B.
    The market went down by 77 % because :
    76 % of the Index capitalization was represented by 4 BANKS !
    These banks stocks did not trade and were “calculated” as ZERO, explaining the move of 77 %.

    Sure, the market should rebound when these stocks will re-open.
    But by how much ?
    The Index collapsed already well earlier during the last several months, weeks etc
    Therefore the 77 % down was from previous close…(ONLY :o)
    It is like if an Index goes from let say 100 at the top, falls to let say 50, then down 77 %.
    Therefore even if the rally will be by lets say 50-70 % (which may seem HUGE)…that is still…..NOT MUCH !


  • Joรƒฦ’ร‚ยฃo da Silva

    Ch.C !
    [quote]Ohhhh Joao….today the Iceland stock market fell by……77 %….in one day !!!!! [/quote]

    But, was it not closed for three days? May be tomorrow, it will rally back? One more question: Were the Chinese not supposed to pump in $5 B there?


    [quote]Not so sure !!!!!![/quote]

    Not sure of what? ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • ch.c.

    Not so sure !!!!!!
    Governments & Central Banks over the world are doing the same !

    Ohhhh Joao….today the Iceland stock market fell by……77 %….in one day !!!!!

  • Joรƒฦ’ร‚ยฃo da Silva

    [quote]Lula said that Brazil was ready to use foreign reserves and buy bank shares if necessary to defend its financial system. [/quote]

    This statement of his proves my earlier statement that [i]some[/i] private banks in Brazil [i]might[/i] be in trouble.If such is the case, I certainly would not like to see the Foreign reserves being burnt to save those idiots. I would let them go belly up. Lets not forget that there are two Federal Banks in Brazil one of which (that acts in international scenario) can easily gobble up those failing banks.

    Also is in the news that around 200 companies are in trouble, because of the currency speculation (that has been amply discussed in this forum by our erudite fellow bloggers). I think we should let them go belly up too. It is time both the Politicians and the Industry Moguls realize that a nation does not generate wealth for its citizens , by currency speculation nor handing out “Bolsa Fmilia” Give incentives to small and medium sized businesses and small family farmers. Review our outdated labor laws, tax codes, etc; and cut down the Xenophobia (which generates votes,but does not bring Foreign Investments in productive sectors of the economy).Learn good things from others and stop caressing “navels”.

    I could go on and on forever, but knowing full well that no politician is going to listen to me, I would rather stop wasting my time. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • ch.c.

    the least risk is Brazil” he underlined.
    So right…when Brazil with siimilar size gdp than Russia, has 40 % of Russia foreign exchange reserves !
    So right…when Brazil has since January 2008 its historical worst current account…DEFICIT !!!!!!!!
    So right…when the Brazilian Currency swinged the most it is obvious because it is the world strongest !
    A 10-15 % currency daily swings shows strength, not weakness !
    So right…when the Brazilian GDP growth rate was the weakest of all BRIC members….yearly since 2003 !!!!!!
    So right…when China has 50 % of foreign currency reserves on a GDP comparison, Brazil 15 % !!!!!
    So right…when Brazil had to intervene to support its currency, by selling US$. A reflection of a strong currency, not weakness !
    So right…when Brazil has to maintain the second World Highest Government interests rates…after inflation. Another proof of strength….not weakness of course !!!!!!
    So right…..when no Brazilian with money trust Robin the Crook and his gang. They then have to pay World Record rates to support the currencies.
    Because now, in an inflation environment of 5 % the Brazilian Govt Rates are
    3-Month 0.000 01/01/2009 13.96 %
    6-Month 0.000 04/01/2009 14.24 %
    1-Year 0.000 07/01/2009 14.37 %
    2-Year 0.000 07/01/2010 15.04 %
    3-Year 10.000 01/01/2012 15.73 %
    5-Year 10.000 01/01/2014 15.71 %
    8-Year 10.000 01/01/2017 15.86 %
    Or said otherwise between 9 and 11 % over inflation !!!!!!
    Whoaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa…what a strong “NATURAL” CURRENCY !!!!!

    Rates are way above defaulted corporate bonds rate quoted in US$. Another sign of currency trust and strength !!!!!!!

    Ohhhhhh….strange that Brazil grew its foreign exchanges reserves from US$ 207 billion fairly recently and suddenly jump to Us$ 230 billion when in reality Brazil was selling some billions dollars to support the Brl !

    Whoaaaaaa !!!!!
    ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜‰

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