Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva declared Tuesday, December 20, that by paying off its US$ 15.5 billion debt with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Brazil was demonstrating its independence.
Lula said the country was able to make the payment because its reserves have now risen to over US$ 60 billion.
According to Lula, Brazil is in charge of its own destiny ("dono de seu nariz" – owner of its own nose) and capable of continued growth.
"We have money, exports, production and now we have shown that we can administer our own debt and move on as we grow more and create jobs," said the President.
In conclusion, Lula said that what Brazil needs is a decade of solid growth in order to achieve definitive stability.