President Lula alongside progressive leaders from Europe and Latin America in Brussels, Belgium. Photo: Ricardo Stuckert / PR

President Luis Inácio Lula da Silva arrived on Sunday (16) in Brussels for a meeting between the leaders of the blocs, which bring together 60 countries. The agenda runs until this Tuesday (18) – and Lula should return to Brasília on the morning of Wednesday (19). Between Monday and Tuesday (18), the president had seven bilateral meetings.

Today’s agenda began with a breakfast with progressive leaders, at 3 am (Brasília time), followed by meetings with the Prime Minister of Sweden, Ulf Kristersson (at 5:30 am), and the Chancellor of Austria, Karl Nehammer (at 6:30 am). Lula also met with the Prime Minister of Denmark, Mette Frederiksen (at 10:15 am), and with the Chancellor of Germany, Olaf Scholz (at 11 am).

Last Monday (17), Lula already had bilateral meetings with the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, with the Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Mottley, with the King of Belgium, Philippe, and with the Prime Minister of the country, Alexander De Croo, in addition to the representative of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola.

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Lula started the day with breakfast with Latin American and European progressive and democratic leaders. Organized by former Prime Minister of Sweden Stefan Löfven, topics such as the defense of democracy, combating inequality, promoting social well-being, respect for human rights, actions for the climate and the environment were discussed. Themes that, according to Planalto, represent points of common interest among the participants.

The meeting brought together, in addition to President Lula, Alberto Fernández (Argentina), Gabriel Boric (Chile), Gustavo Petro (Colombia), the Prime Minister of Portugal, António Costa, the Prime Minister of Denmark, Mette Fredricksen, the Chancellor of Germany, Olaf Scholz, and the President of the Government of Spain, Pedro Sánchez, among others. The government of Mexico was represented by the Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Alicia Barcena.


President Lula and the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Sweden, Ulf Kristersson. Photo: Ricardo Stuckert / PR

The meeting with the Prime Minister of Sweden, Ulf Kristersson, to discuss bilateral relations between Brazil and the Scandinavian country also discussed Embraer’s partnership with Saab, manufacturer of the new F-39E Gripen fighters for the Brazilian Air Force (FAB).

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The official website of the Federal Government only reported that the Swedish prime minister invited the Brazilian president to visit Sweden, which was complied with.

Brazil and Sweden have a production contract for the Gripen fighters, which are produced in Sweden and currently also at Embraer’s headquarters in Gavião Peixoto (SP). The national assembly line for the aircraft was inaugurated in May of this year, in an event that Lula participated in.

The Brazilian Gripen Program started in 2013 and the contract for the purchase of aircraft and transfer of aircraft technology to Brazil was signed in October 2014 – the first two operational FAB Gripen were delivered in September 2022 and incorporated into the service in December last year. The idea is to expand production to other armed forces on the continent.

A partnership between Embraer and Saab could also enable the sale of the KC-390 to the Swedish air force, with each company working on the project in its area of ​​expertise – Embraer producing the plane and Saab supplying electrical equipment and sensors.

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Several of the bilateral meetings had brief announcements, as in the case of the agenda with the Chancellor of Austria, Karl Nehammer. The two leaders discussed relations between the two countries, and President Lula invited Nehammer to visit Brazil.


President Lula and the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Denmark, Mette Frederiksen. Photo: Ricardo Stuckert / PR

A bilateral meeting between Lula and the Prime Minister of Denmark, Mette Frederiksen, took place at 3:15 pm. Brazil managed to approve a contribution to the Amazon Fund in the Danish budget.

Since it started working again, with the Lula government, new contributions to the program have been announced, such as the European Union, R$ 108 million, the United Kingdom, R$ 500 million, and the United States, R$ 2 .5 billion.

In addition to committing to trying to approve a contribution to the fund in the Danish budget, Frederiksen spoke about the fight against inequality and invited Lula to visit his country, which was reciprocated.

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The Amazon Fund was created in 2008, during President Lula’s second government, to raise donations against deforestation in the rainforest. Resources are paid only if there is proof of reduction in deforestation.

Since it began, after the first transfers made by Norway and Germany, the mechanism has already yielded R$ 5.5 billion with the addition of financial profitability.

Most initiatives are carried out in partnership with NGOs in the nine Amazonian states (AC, AP, AM, MA, MT, PA, RO, RR and TO). By the beginning of this year, 102 projects worth R$ 1.74 billion had already been approved.

In all, the fund registers 384 institutions involved, 195 conservation units supported, 59,000 indigenous people benefited, 207,000 people benefited from sustainable activities and 1,700 environmental inspection missions.

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Foto: Ricardo Stuckert (PR)

Scholz invited President Lula to hold the second High Level Intergovernmental Consultation Meeting, in Berlin (Germany).

The meeting, which will include representatives from various ministries, is scheduled for December 4, 2023, on the way back from President Lula’s trip to the United Arab Emirates — where he will participate in COP 28, which will take place from November 30, in Dubai. The meeting in Germany will be held seven years after the first meeting, held in August 2015, in Brasília (DF), with the participation of then Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Lula said he will discuss industrial investments and renewable energy, as published on his Twitter. “We agreed to hold a new meeting in December, in Germany, with the presence of ministers from both governments to deepen the agenda between our countries on various topics, such as industrial investments and renewable energy,” Lula wrote on social networks.


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