U.S. Reaches Deal With Brazil Ending Cotton Dispute

October 1, 2014

Alan Bjerga – Bloomberg News, 09/30/2014

The U.S. and Brazil reached a $300 million agreement to resolve a dispute over cotton subsidies that has bedeviled the two nations for more than a decade.

The accord signed today in Washington involves a one-time U.S. payment to the Brazil Cotton Institute in return for that nation dropping all claims against the U.S., the U.S. Trade Representative said in a statement. Brazil will also not pursue any new World Trade Organization cotton claims while a five-year farm bill Congress passed in February is in effect.

“Today’s agreement brings to a close a matter which put hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. exports at risk,” U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman said in a statement with Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “The United States and Brazil look forward to building on this significant progress in our bilateral economic relationship.”

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Brazil Files Bribery Charges in Embraer Aircraft Sale to Dominican Republic

September 24, 2014

Joe Palazzolo and Rogerio Jelmayer – The Wall Street Journal, 9/23/2014

Brazilian authorities have filed a criminal action against eight Embraer SA employees accusing them of bribing officials in the Dominican Republic in return for a $92 million contract to provide the country’s armed forces with attack planes.

The criminal complaint, filed under seal and reviewed by The Wall Street Journal, marks one of the first known efforts by Brazil to prosecute its citizens for allegedly paying bribes abroad, a milestone achieved with help from the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The U.S. agencies are also investigating the company’s dealings in the Dominican Republic and elsewhere and have provided their Brazilian counterparts with evidence, according to a request last year for legal assistance from Brazilian prosecutors.

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Brazil’s Marina Silva wants better US ties

September 18, 2014

Associated Press – The Independent, 09/17/2014

Marina Silva, a front-running presidential candidate who grew up in the Amazon jungle and could become the first black to lead Brazil’s government, said Wednesday that if elected she’ll improve ties with the U.S. and strongly push for human rights in nations like Cuba.

She spoke exclusively to The Associated Press in her first interview with a foreign media outlet since being thrust into Brazil’s presidential campaign after her Socialist Party’s original candidate died in an Aug. 13 plane crash.

Silva, a former Amazon activist, senator and environment minister who pushed policies that helped Brazil slash the rate at which it was destroying the jungle, has found herself at the center of a suddenly hot presidential race pitting her against President Dilma Rousseff, with whom she’s running in a dead heat in the latest polls. The incumbent represents the Workers Party, which Silva helped found three decades ago.

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AP Interview: Silva Seeks Grassroots Brazil Reform

September 18, 2014

Associated Press – ABC News, 09/18/2014

Front-running presidential candidate Marina Silva says the key to her support among millions of Brazilians who joined in anti-government protests last year is her understanding that reforming a broken political system will come from the ground up.

Silva spoke exclusively with The Associated Press on Wednesday in her first interview with a foreign media outlet since being thrust into a hotly contested campaign just a month ago, after her Socialist Party’s first candidate died in a plane crash Aug. 13.

In a wide-ranging, hour-long interview, Silva said that as president she would seek bilateral trade deals and better relations with the U.S. and Europe, and would push for improved human rights in allies such as Cuba.

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Construction begins on first-ever undersea fiber optic cable from Brazil to the U.S.

September 11, 2014

Richard Byrne Reilly – VentureBeat, 09/10/2014

Seaborn Networks and Alcatel Lucent are taking their broadband and data concerns underwater. Under the Atlantic Ocean, to be specific.

The two companies are planning the first-ever submarine fiber optic cable connecting Brazil to the U.S. The cable, which will run from the Brazilian city of Fortleza, on that country’s Eastern coast, to Wall Street in New York City, will help handle the increasing data flows between the two nations.

The cable, called the Seabras-1, is being developed by John Schwartz and his team at Seaborn. Seabras-1 will transmit data, including cell traffic and digital feeds, at 60 terabits per second.

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US Clears Black Hawk Sale to Brazil

September 10, 2014

Joe Gould – Defense News, 9/9/2014

The US State Department has cleared a $145 million sale of UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters to Brazil, the Pentagon agency that coordinates foreign weapon sales said Tuesday.

The Defense Security Cooperation Agency notified Congress on Monday that the State Department approved the sale.

Brazil requested three UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters with eight T-700-GE-701C engines (six installed and two spares), a dozen M-134 7.62mm machine guns, eight H765GU embedded global positioning system/inertial navigation systems, and related training, logistics and support equipment, according to the agency’s notice.

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U.S. World Cup Love Prompts Brazil to Shift Olympic Ads

August 28, 2014

Bill Faries – Bloomberg, 8/28/2014

American enthusiasm for soccer’s World Cup prompted Brazil to shift more of its advertising toward the U.S. ahead of the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, the head of Brazil’s tourism agency Embratur said.

U.S. citizens represented just over 10 percent of the 1.04 million foreign visitors to Brazil during the month long tournament that ended July 13, Embratur President Vicente Neto said in an interview. That made the U.S. the second-biggest source of foreign fans after neighboring Argentina, whose team made it to the final against Germany.

“It exceeded all our expectations,” Neto said in Miami last week. “We’re expecting that to be the same with the Olympics, given the U.S. history and participation in the Games.”

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