In Portugal, Brazil’s Lula tries to lure back foreign investors

In Portugal, Brazil's Lula tries to lure back foreign investors

LISBON – Attempting to lure back cautious foreign investors, Brazil’s President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva vowed on Monday to restore stability and credibility, inviting Portuguese companies and others to construct partnerships together with his nation’s corporations.

“Brazil is ready to go back to being a big country,” Lula advised enterprise leaders within the northern Portuguese metropolis of Matosinhos. “Brazil is ready to go back to being attractive.”

Leftist Lula arrived in Portugal on Friday for a five-day go to, his first to Europe since taking workplace as president, and is making an attempt to quell investors’ considerations over his bold social spending objectives.

On the occasion in Matosinhos, additionally attended by Portugal’s Prime Minister Antonio Costa and different authorities officers, Lula mentioned that to entice foreign capital, Brazil wanted political, social and judicial stability.

“Without that, no investor will put money in another country,” he mentioned, criticising former President Jair Bolsonaro for holding Brazil “isolated from the world” throughout his 4 years in workplace.

He mentioned there have been alternatives for foreign funding in numerous sectors, together with renewable vitality initiatives, and mentioned Brazil was searching for partnerships, highlighting the deal between Brazilian planemaker Embraer and Portuguese aerospace firm OGMA to construct NATO-approved plane.

Each international locations’ commerce and funding companies, Portugal’s AICEP and Brazil’s APEX, signed a cooperation settlement.

Lula reiterated criticism of Brazil’s rate of interest ranges, saying that native lending prices have been excessively excessive.

“The benchmark rate is at 13.75% now, and nobody borrows money at 13.75%,” Lula mentioned.

Lula and different politicians have pressured the unbiased central financial institution to decrease charges from their present six-year excessive however the financial institution’s governor, Roberto Campos Neto, has defended its actions as technical, “not political”.

Lula additionally reiterated that his administration wouldn’t promote public corporations.

“Brazil in the last six years sold a lot of public assets not to build other assets but just to pay interest on the public debt,” Lula added, notably criticising the privatisation of energy agency Eletrobras.

Latin America’s largest utility, Eletrobras, was privatised in June 2022 by the Bolsonaro administration, when the federal government diluted its then-controlling stake within the agency in a $6.9 billion share providing.

(Reporting by Catarina Demony in Lisbon; Further reporting by Gabriel Araujo and Eduardo Simoes; Enhancing by Bernadette Baum)