By Jay Forte, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Yesterday (April 24th) Brazil and Spain signed a series of agreements aimed at bilateral cooperation in the areas of development, economy and trade, infrastructure, transport, water resources and diplomacy, according to a government news source.
In a meeting in Brasília with Spanish President Mariano Rajoy, President Michel Temer highlighted the importance of the relationship, explaining, “We agree that trade and investment are at the heart of our bilateral agenda. I do not need to say how important the role of Spanish investors in our country is.”
According to government news sources, Temer was confident in the reforms that the Brazilian government is trying to implement, and said investor and consumer confidence in the country is coming back.
“We are taking these reforms forward. Through dialogue, on the one hand, through fiscal responsibility, coupled with social responsibility. I think, business owners will be able to say more confidently than I do, that they are returning the confidence of investors and the consumer,” Temer said.
To this audience, Temer said that the government has “very strong” support from the National Congress. The government and allied base in congress have met almost daily to ensure the approval of the social security reform. Brazilian officials say growth in 2018 may exceed three percent if congress approves the measures.
It is the first visit of a Spanish president to Brazil in nine years. In Spain, the head of government is the president, elected by the deputies, and who plays a similar role to that of prime minister. The head of state is the king. In 2012, the then king of Spain, Juan Carlos I, was in Brazil. His son, Philip VI, is the current ruler.
Spain is one of the largest trading partners in Brazil, with investments of US$64 billion in the country through last year. The goal of the Brazilian government is to increase bilateral investments and expand cooperation for research and development of technologies.