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A Fair in Brazil Shows the Amazon Is Not Untouchable

Amazontech 2006, an international fair promoted in a different state of the Legal Amazon each year, will kick off tomorrow, November 29, with the theme "Sustainable development of the Amazon and its importance to the world."

The idea is to bring to the region not only Brazilian technological innovations, but foreign ones as well. In the future, the event will be extended to other continents, in order to promote the event and to seek partners.

The fifth edition of the fair will run until December 3rd at the Júlio César Events Center, in the northern Brazilian capital of Belém do Pará.

This year’s fair, which should be attended by approximately 20,000 people, will be divided into seven thematic sections: forest sustainability, sustainable exploration of minerals and energy sources, bio industry and bio energy, fair trade, water, carbon credits, and sustainable development of small businesses.

Each section will feature a series of technical events aimed at discussing alternatives for using the region’s income-generating potential and fostering sustainable businesses.

The Legal Amazon covers the whole of eight Brazilian states, Acre, Amazonas, Amapá, Roraima, Rondônia, Tocantins and Pará – all in the north of Brazil – and Mato Grosso – in the Midwest – and part of Maranhão – in the northeast – and the states included will have space to show what each has accomplished, presenting technological solutions, projects and initiatives that helped develop the region, based on the event’s thematic sections. Local universities will also show what they have done to improve living conditions in the region and to encourage regional economic models.

"This is one of Amazon’s most important events, therefore it must be used to promote a broad debate and to strengthen partnerships," says Lecy Garcia, superintendent of the Brazilian Micro and Small Business Support Service from the state of Pará (Sebrae/Pará).

"This is an opportunity to show that the Amazon must not be regarded solely as an untouchable region, and that it is possible to promote sustainable development there, favoring the local population, most of all," Lecy claims.

During the five days of the fair, there will be lectures, conferences, debates, business roundtables and presentations of scientific surveys. Amazontech will also feature the Amazon Pavilion, which will be split into four spaces: Forest, Water, Earth and Culture.

Highlight

The Technological Showcase of the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa) will be one of the highlights of Amazontech 2006. The space is being assembled in an 8,000-square-meter area in the institution. Approximately 140 technologies will be exhibited, in addition to vegetable species and animals such as buffaloes, goats and sheep.

Each species will be accommodated in premises built according to the technologies developed for their raising. The project includes a six-meter-high belvedere.

Embrapa Acre, for instance, will exhibit its research with Teak trees (Tectona grandis), and products derived from Brazil nuts. The Teak tree is an Asian forest specimen that yields quality wood of high market value.

It has attracted the attention of reforestation projects due to its rusticity, ease of adaptation, and short growth cycle compared with its original region. Whereas in Asia it takes 80 years to be harvested, in Brazil, plantations reach maturity at 25 years of age.

The Amazontech fair was created by Sebrae and Embrapa from Roraima, a northern Brazilian state, the first one to host the event, in 2001. The second edition took place in Rio Branco, the capital city of the northern Brazilian state of Acre, in 2002.

In the following year, the event was held in Manaus. The last edition was held in Cuiabá, capital city of the state of Mato Grosso, in midwestern Brazil, in 2004. The fair is sponsored by Banco da Amazônia, Banco do Brasil and the government of the state of Pará.

Service

Amazontech 2006
From November 29th to December 3rd
Centro de Eventos Júlio César – Belém do Pará
Access to the fair is free of charge, as well is participation in all technical events.

Additional information:
www.amazontech.pa.sebrae.com.br

Anba – www.anba.com.br

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