Following the launch of the women’s network in Salvador da Bahia yesterday, Maas is now in Brasilia where the focus will be on political talks and exchanges with German civil society and business. Today, he will first of all discuss the German-Brazilian partnership with his counterpart Ernesto Araújo and then President Jair Bolsonaro. Internationally, Brazil has considerable diplomatic clout: its voice is listened to. The country is therefore indispensable when it comes to international cooperation to find solutions to key global issues such as climate protection, armed conflicts and trade. There is much common ground between Germany and Brazil: in the case of Venezuela, Germany and Brazil are both working to ensure a peaceful political solution to the current crisis and have been liaising with each other. In the trade sphere, the two countries are calling for a speedy conclusion of the Association Agreement between the EU and Mercosur.
Foundation of shared values
Germany and Brazil have enjoyed a strategic partnership for more than ten years. The last round of comprehensive intergovernmental consultations was held in Brasilia in 2015. The German Foreign Minister is also keen to ensure that this partnership is always based on shared values. Germany’s guiding principles are clear to Heiko Maas: human rights, democracy, diversity and the rule of law are the prerequisites for peace and international cooperation. Brazil is a strong country and its strength stems not least from the richness and diversity of Brazilian society.
Important exchange with business and civil society
In no German city are there as many companies in which German corporations hold an interest as there are in São Paulo, Brazil. Around 1000 companies together with a further 600 firms across Brazil with German participation account for around 12 percent of industrial GDP and have created approximately 243,000 jobs. Today in Brasilia, Foreign Minister Maas will meet key representatives of German business in order to gain a first-hand impression of the outlook under the new government. After that, he will meet representatives of German and Brazilian civil society, academia and the cultural scene.
Cooperation between the two countries’ civil societies and academic communities is vibrant and extensive. With the German Centre for Research and Innovation in São Paulo, the German research community has an impressive centre for its diverse partnerships with universities and research institutes. Following the disastrous fire in the National Museum in Rio in September 2018, German experts are helping to save valuable artworks. Furthermore, there are wide-ranging exchanges and cooperation projects on green issues. For instance, Brazilian mayors visited Germany to learn more about innovative climate policy.