"A "triangular commitment" must be forged between the European Union, the G-20 (the group of 21 developing countries), and the United States to resolve the agricultural trade issues pending in the World Trade Organization (WTO), president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva said Monday, May 29, during his weekly radio broadcast, "Breakfast with the President."
"If an agreement is not reached, I believe it will be a huge reverse," Lula remarked. "The poor countries will continue to grow poorer. What do we want? We want an agreement in which each party yields a little."
According to President Lula, both the rich countries and the developing countries need to lower barriers and subsidies.
"The European Union has to be more flexible in permitting the developing countries and the poorest countries to have access to its market for agricultural goods. The United States has to do its part by diminishing the amount of subsidies, which are very powerful in American agriculture," Lula commented.
He also underscored the need for the G-20 to "be more flexible about industrial goods and services."
The president pointed out that July is the deadline for reaching an agreement.
A Brazilian business mission is beginning a visit to five Central American countries for the purpose of identifying business and investment opportunities and expanding trade with the nations of the region.
The group, which is led by the Brazilian ministers of Development, Industry, and Foreign Trade, Luiz Fernando Furlan, and Mines and Energy, Silas Rondeau, will travel to Panama, Costa Rica, Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras.
The Brazilians will maintain contacts with government officials and entrepreneurs in each country, as well as taking part in seminars and business rounds organized by the Export and Investment Promotion Agency (APEX-Brazil). The mission will spend the entire week in the region. Their return to Brazil is scheduled for Saturday, June 3.