Representatives of four Italian regions are on a Amazon tour in Brazil. They are starting talks with Brazilian authorities about possible development projects in the area.
This visit is a result of Italy’s constitutional change that permits Italian regions to make agreements with other countries.
The Italian delegation comprises 16 representatives from four central-north regions of Italy (Toscana, Umbria, Marche and Emília-Romagna) and is visiting the Amazon River area along the borders of Brazil, Colombia and Peru.
They are not only studying possibilities for, but also obstacles to local development projects.
Results of the study are to be presented in June 2006. The agreement will last for three years. So far the Italians have expressed interest in lumbering and fishing projects, as well as many types of exotic food – from tropical fruit to alligator meat.
Remir Castioni, who works in the Palácio do Planalto (the presidential office), and is overseeing the Italian mission, says they could eventually provide assistance to small businesses in the lumber sector, personnel training, material analysis, certification and set up a reference center.