RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Our front page story this week is about the G20 Summit in Seoul, South Korea this year. This international organization was established in 1999 and completely failed in their mission to stabilize global economics in recent years. After the international financial collapse in 2007, they started inviting Heads of State and meeting as a bi-annual Summit… but still haven’t managed to put a decent web site together.
Brazil was in the house, and Lula brought Rousseff along for her first international event as President Elect. When the Group of Twenty top financial thinkers of the world met for this last Summit on November 11-12th, the focused goals were: 1. Ensuring Ongoing Global Economic Recovery, 2. Framework for Strong, Sustainable, and Balanced Growth, 3. Strengthening the International Financial Regulatory System, and 4. Modernizing the International Financial Institutions.
Sounds good to me.
Back on earth, or at least the sands of Rio, we’ve been watching the oil boom, the real estate boom, and now there seems to be a boom of Chinese markets in Tijuca. Asians apparently make up just 0.5 percent of the Brazilian population, but in Rio’s Zona Norte neighborhood, local residents are noticing an increasing presence of Chinese businesses.
It may not be common knowledge, but it is also reported that Brazil has the largest population of Japanese outside of Japan, mostly in São Paulo. Coming from New York, there are noticeably less Asians on the streets, although no shortage of sushi restaurants. As a matter-of-fact (or speculation rather), they are opening another one where the beloved Irish Pub used to be, owned by Brazilians of course.
G20, Booms and Bossa Nova, and this last bit about the music genre was fun to cover under the context of Urca’s Club ZoZô Wednesday night shows, and to some extent TribOz in Glória (or “Old Lapa” as owner Mike Ryan insists). The term Bossa Nova, to me has been similar to Film Noir, an artistic phrase remaining elusively vague, yet prominent in the public consciousness.
This doesn’t say much for my cultural refinement, but I’m happy as long as I know Águas de Março (Rains of March) and The Girl From Ipanema are Bossa Nova songs, and now I have a place to go to hear it played live.