US must do more to strengthen ties with Brazil – US trade official
SAO PAULO, April 7 (Reuters) – The Biden administration is not doing enough to forge a long-term alliance with Brazil, Myron Brilliant, head of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s international affairs division, said on Thursday. during a press conference in Sao Paulo. .
“In my opinion, I don’t think the Biden administration is doing enough to focus on this region,” he said of the world’s ninth-largest economy, adding that part of the reason is the American domestic agenda.
Brilliant said the lack of U.S. engagement in Latin America means “opportunities are not being developed (or a) long-term strategic plan in the way we hoped.”
The absence of the United States paved the way for other partners to liaise and do business with Brazil.
“What we have seen over the past decade is a significant increase in Chinese investment and engagement in the region,” Brilliant said. “We are also seeing a Russian engagement. We would say the United States needs to be there.”
The United States is Brazil’s second largest trading partner, behind China. The difference is that Brazil has a trade surplus with the Asian country and a deficit with the United States.
Brazil and the United States compete as exporters of agricultural products such as soybeans, meat and corn.
In the first quarter of the year, Brazil recorded a trade deficit of $3.8 billion with the United States and a surplus of $4.7 billion with China, according to Brazilian government data.
The United States accounted for about 11% of Brazil’s overall exports during the period, while China accounted for nearly 28%, according to the data.
“Defining trade in terms of deficit and surplus is a mistake,” Brilliant said. “The important thing for us is to have a level playing field.” (Reporting by Ana Mano; Editing by Leslie Adler, Bernard Orr)