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US, Brazil sign 'ambitious' trade protocol

US, Brazil sign 'ambitious' trade protocol

FILE PHOTO: US President Donald Trump hosts a working dinner with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro at the Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida, US., Mar 7, 2020. REUTERS/Tom Brenner/File Photo)

RIO DE JANEIRO: The United States and Brazil signed three agreements on Monday (Oct 19) they said would expand and deepen their existing trade deal, the latest bonding moment under Presidents Donald Trump and Jair Bolsonaro.

Brazil said talks on the "ambitious" agreements were launched when Bolsonaro, a far-right leader sometimes called the "Tropical Trump," met the US president at the latter's Mar-A-Lago golf resort in March.

The new protocol adds chapters on facilitating trade, regulatory practices and anti-corruption measures to the countries' existing trade deal, which came into force last year, the two governments said in a joint statement.

"In the last year and a half, together with President Donald Trump, we have raised the relationship between Brazil and the United States to its best moment ever and, with this, we have inaugurated a new stage in the relationship between the two largest economies and democracies of the hemisphere," Bolsonaro said in announcing the agreements.

"This triple package will reduce bureaucracy and bring even more growth to our bilateral trade."

READ: Bolsonaro's popularity surges to high despite COVID-19 pandemic

Analysts said Brazil was keen to get the protocol signed before the US election on Nov 3, which is casting uncertainty on the future of bilateral relations in the event of a victory for Trump's Democratic challenger, Joe Biden.

"Under a potential Joe Biden presidency, trade deals with Brazil will face more hurdles," the consultancy Eurasia Group said in a note.

The talks came as National Security Advisor Robert O'Brien visited Brazil for high-level talks, expected to include US pressure on Bolsonaro's government not to use Chinese firm Huawei to build a new 5G cellular network.

Source: AFP/kv

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