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Trade relations is being developed between Brazil and Russia
Brazil and Russia have great potential for developing trade relations, Luiz Ribeiro, director of the international department of the Brazilian Agricultural Ministry, said in regard to Vice President Jose Alencar visit to Russia in October. "Brazil and Russia have a tremendous potential for further developing their cooperation, especially in the sphere of agricultural trade," he said in an interview with RIA Novosti. The Brazilian expert noted that business relations, meeting the interest of both countries, had been established between Brazil and Russia over the past few years. Presently, trade between Russia and Brazil is about $2 billion a year and there is an upward trend, he added. These positive trends can be seen, for example, from Russia's increased purchases of Brazilian meat. In the first five months of 2004, these purchases amounted to nearly $54 million. Though the foreign trade balance is favorable for Brazil today, Brazil is very interested in expanding its imports from Russia, including Russian agricultural products, noted Mr. Ribeiro. He said there were still two unresolved problems between Brazil and Russia: Brazilian beef and Russian wheat. He said that Brazil was one of the largest importers of grain and that it imported it from Argentina, the United States and Canada. According to him, Brazil is ready to annually buy up to six million metric tons of wheat from Russia. Differences regarding the standard of wheat quality between Brazil and Russia were the main obstacle for purchasing Russian wheat, he noted. This year, Russia asked Brazil to lower its quality standards for Russian wheat. Brazil has revised its criteria and now expects an answer from Russia. He said that trade differences would be overcome within the next few weeks or during Mr. Alencar's visit to Moscow in October. Russia is the second, after the European Union, importer of Brazilian beef. In his opinion, in order to develop bilateral trade, there are tremendous possibilities for expanding Brazil's exports to Russia, including traditional Brazilian products that are still not imported to Russia like sugar, orange juice, tropical fruit, shrimp and other seafood, aside from purchasing Russian goods. He said that aircraft and high technologies from Russia were very important for Brazil.
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