Angela Merkel Asks Brazilians on Audi Business Trip to Consider Investing in Portugal and Spain


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SAO PAULO--Nov. 22, 2012: Concerned with the economic stability of the European Union, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has asked the government and business community of Brazil to consider investing in Portugal and Spain, countries that are among those most affected by the world economic crisis.  The encounter took place during the Audi Business Trip, an event organized by LIDE -- Grupo de Lideres Empresariais (Group of Business Leaders) from November 14th to 20th, in Germany, with master sponsorship by Audi.

Responding to the Chancellor's request, Michel Temer, Vice President of the Republic, said, "We want to work with Germany and continue relations with Portugal and Spain." Temer noted that there are more than 1,200 German companies operating in Brazil, and that reciprocal trade and investments are increasing.  The free trade project between the European Union and Mercosul, which has been dormant for years, despite German wishes, was another issue taken up.  Temer observed that this is a matter "under permanent discussion."

The Vice President of the Republic joined the committee of Brazilian businessmen led by Luiz Fernando Furlan, former Minister of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade, and President of LIDE INTERNACIONAL, which is made up of Joao Doria Jr., World President of LIDE; Leandro Radomile, President of AUDI; Marcelo Lyra, Vice President of Braskem; Jackson Schneider, President of Embraer; Mario Anseloni, President of Itautec; and Jose Seripieri Jr, President of Qualicorp.  In addition to meeting with Angela Merkel, the group also met with the President of Germany, Joachim Gauck, and the President of the parliament, Norbert Lammert.

The group also took part in a luncheon with German businessmen at the headquarters of BDI, the German Confederation of Industry, in Berlin.  The gathering was attended by the Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Antonio Carlos Raupp; Brazil's ambassador to Germany, Everton Vargas; and an additional 20 Brazilian executives.

The tax burden as well as bureaucracy involved in moving forward with infrastructure projects comprised part of a list of German complaints.  Temer showed that these problems are being addressed by President Dilma Rousseff.  He cited the program Brasil Sem Fronteiras ('Brazil without borders'), which has already placed more than 20 thousand students in the best universities in the world, and that is going to change the face of the Brazilian market.  "Brazil, in addition to being a country where the world's companies want to be and have to be, continues to keep its doors open for investment by partners, particularly those who are in search of solutions."

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