Double Down! Brazil Moves to Drastically Boost Trade With Russia

© AP Photo / Eraldo Peres / A man delivers sides of beaf to meat to a butcher shop in Brasilia, Brazil, Monday, March 20, 2017
A man delivers sides of beaf to meat to a butcher shop in Brasilia, Brazil, Monday, March 20, 2017 - Sputnik International
The Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture has officially announced plans to double the volume of bilateral trade with Russia in the next five years, an increase of up to $10 billion annually.

This file photo taken on March 21, 2017 shows a member of staff clearing packs of imported meat from Brazil off the shelves of a supermarket in Hong Kong - Sputnik International
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According to an official communique issued by Brazil’s Agricultural Ministry following the talks between Minister of Agriculture Blairo Maggi and his Russian colleagues, Brazil intends to increase imports of Russian wheat and fish products, as well as boost meat exports to Russia.

Helio Sirimarco, Vice President of the Brazilian Agricultural Association, told Sputnik Brazil that both sides need to combine their interests during the negotiations, and to deal with logistical problems and the costs of logistics, which could either improve or hamper bilateral trade between the two nations.

"In the past Brazil enjoyed excellent trade relations with the USSR, supplying it with large quantities of soy. Later we managed to get access to the meat market as well. Recent problems caused by the Brazil meat scandal apparently did not have a significant impact on the volume of sales, so we should proceed with negotiations," Sirimarco said.

He pointed out that the majority of countries which previously suspended meat imports from Brazil during the onset of the aforementioned scandal have once again started purchasing Brazilian meat, with sales volumes returning to their pre-scandal levels. As the quality of Brazilian meat is well-known throughout the world, the situation remains normal, he added.

"Brazil is also interested in importing Russian wheat. However, there’s the matter of price, as traditionally we buy wheat from neighboring Argentina, which is significantly cheaper. Additionally, the logistics of Russian wheat are much more expensive, so we still need to work on these aspects," Sirimarco explained.

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