Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva met with the president of Cabo Verde, Pedro Pires, Tuesday, October 4, and once again called for UN reform, including the expansion of the Security Council.
In a speech at a lunch in honor of Pires, Lula thanked Cabo Verde for supporting the Brazilian candidacy for a permanent seat on the council. "This would make the UN more democratic and strengthen international peace and security," said Lula.
With regard to trade, Lula went on to say that it was essential to make the World Trade Organization more transparent and representative in order to benefit developing nations.
He emphasized the importance of the G-20, a developing nation group that seeks to eliminate farm subsidies and liberalize international trade in agricultural products.
Lula also mentioned his campaign to mobilize world leaders in the fight against hunger. "Cabo Verde has joined this fight and together with Brazil is working to lay the foundations for a more just and prosperous future," he said. It is hunger, poverty and social exclusion that are the real barriers we must overcome to achieve longlasting development."
As for the future of Brazil-Cabo Verde trade relations, Lula said he was optimistic and certain that there was room for expansion. He said Brazil was working to increase its exports to Cabo Verde. So far this year, Brazil has exported goods worth US$ 15.5 million to Cabo Verde (mostly iron bars, fruit juices, sugar and cement), and imported goods worth US$ 22.9 million.
The two presidents met privately and discussed, among other things, the installation of Cabo Verde’s first public university which the two have been working on jointly since Lula’s visit in July 2004. Brazil is training teachers for the future African university.
The scattering of Afro-descendants around the world is the subject of the 3rd Conference of the Association for the Study of World African Diaspora (ASWAD) which is taking place for the first time in Brazil. Some 400 Brazilian and foreign scholars with links to 191 universities worldwide will participate.
ASWAD is a non-profit organization which studies the African contribution to Western culture and the position and problems of Afro-descendants in society.