WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Brazil-U.S. Business Council hosted day one of its two-day U.S.-Brazil Connect Summit as news began to break that the two countries have reached an agreement on a bilateral trade package.
The U.S. and Brazil have been working towards a package since March when President Donald Trump and President Jair Bolsonaro directed their respective trade delegations to deepen the bilateral relationship.
President Bolsonaro opened today’s summit, emphasizing that the U.S. and Brazil relationship has never been stronger.
“Over the last year and a half, together with President Trump, we have elevated Brazil-U.S. relations to its best moment ever, and opened a new chapter in the relationship between the two largest economies and democracies in the hemisphere,” said Bolsonaro.
Bolsonaro went on to outline the three key areas of the soon-to-be announced agreement.
“Brazilian and U.S. officials completed, in record time, negotiations of three agreements that have long been demanded by the private sectors of our countries. A trade facilitation agreement, an agreement in good regulatory practices, and an anti-corruption agreement. This triple package will be able to slash red tape and bring about even more growth to our bilateral trade with beneficial effects to the flow of investments as well.”
Following Bolsonaro’s remarks and during a discussion moderated by U.S. Chamber Executive Vice President and Head of International Affairs Myron Brilliant, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo remarked on the importance of Brazil as a gateway to increasing U.S. engagement and cooperation across South America.
“There is a deep understanding all across America that the American people benefit from a set of deeper, closer ties with all of our friends in the western hemisphere and in South America, and it is not possible to have a solid, capable, deep set of relationships there without an anchor like Brazil,” said Sec. Pompeo. “I am proud of what we accomplished. I know that there is an awful lot that remains to do, and I look forward to continuing to build that out.”
The Chamber’s Brazil-U.S. Business Council has been promoting the bilateral economic relationship for more than 40 years, representing the voice of business and expressing its priorities. The Council engaged the two governments throughout the negotiations and provided specific recommendations on all three agreed upon chapters as well as the originally planned digital trade chapter.
Brilliant welcomed the progress made in the areas of trade facilitation, good regulatory practices, and anti-corruption, while acknowledging the work that remains on key elements such as digital trade and delivery services.
“The Chamber applauds the progress of the U.S. and Brazilian governments for delivering a trade package that will help foster stronger commercial ties between the two governments. By implementing trade facilitation reforms, embracing good regulatory practices, and taking steps to combat corruption, this agreement will support commerce, growth, and job creation in both countries,” said Brilliant. “There is still much more to do on key priorities—the fact that digital trade and express shipment provisions did not make the cut is a missed opportunity. We ask both governments to return to the negotiating table as soon as possible to leverage the positive momentum of today’s announcement.”
For more on the U.S. Chamber’s policy priorities for completing a comprehensive trade deal, read the one-pager "Building a Strategic Alliance for the 21st Century."
The full agenda for the 2020 U.S.-Brazil Connect Summit can be found here. If you are interested in attending day two of the summit, which will feature Ambassador Robert Lighthizer, Larry Kudlow, Sen. Marco Rubio, and ambassadors from both countries please email firstname.lastname@example.org.