India – Brazil Relations
India and Brazil share a very close and multifaceted relationship at bilateral level as well as in plurilateral fora such as BRICS, BASIC, G-20, G-4, IBSA, International Solar Alliance, Biofuture Platform and in the larger multilateral bodies such as the UN, WTO, UNESCO and WIPO. The decade long bilateral strategic partnership, which has opened a new phase for India-Brazil relations, is based on a common global vision, shared democratic values, and a commitment to foster economic growth with social inclusion for the welfare of the people of both countries.
India’s strategic partnership with Brazil continued to intensify in 2016. Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi and President Michel Temer met at the VIII BRICS Summit which took place on October 15-16, 2016 in Goa, India. The large number of side events provided ample opportunity for the five BRICS nations to hold discussions on various proposals and adopt action plans on subjects in areas of mutual interest, leading to the comprehensive Goa Declaration. On October 17, 2016, PM and President Temer held delegation-level deliberations to further strengthen the strategic partnership. Three MOUs were signed during the bilateral visit of President Temer, viz:
(i) MOU between ICAR and Brazilian Agriculture Research Corporation (EMBRAPA) for Cooperation in the fields of Genetic Resources, Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Natural Resources and Fisheries;
(ii) MOU between Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries (DADF) and Brazilian Agriculture Research Corporation (EMBRAPA) on cooperation in the Fields of Zebu Cattle Genomics and Assisted Reproductive Technologies;
(iii) MOU between Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) and the Brazilian Health Surveillance Agency (ANVISA) for cooperation in the field of pharmaceutical production regulation.
The two sides agreed to explore the early signing of an Investment Cooperation and Facilitation Treaty that will act as a catalyst to boost trade and economic ties. An Agreement between Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) and the Brazilian Association of Technical Norms (ABNT) for Cooperation in Mutual Recognition was also signed on October 24, 2016. Other areas of cooperation discussed during the bilateral meeting were UNSC reforms, IBSA, bilateral trade, agriculture, food processing, energy, science and technology, pharmaceuticals, space, nuclear energy, climate change, counterterrorism and cyber security.
Earlier, the Third Meeting of the Joint Administrative Committee (JAC) on India-MERCOSUR Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) was held on 29th September, 2016 in Brasilia. The modalities and next steps for expansion of the PTA were discussed. It was agreed that both sides would work proactively and in a time bound manner to add 2000 lines each to the PTA. The fourth meeting of the Brazil-India Trade Monitoring Mechanism (TMM) was held on 30th September in Brasilia. Numerous issues of importance to both sides such as visa/immigration issues, business missions and trade fairs, market access issues, and sectors such as leather, civil aviation, automotive, food processing, agribusiness, etc were discussed during the meeting and substantial progress was made.
The Eighth India-Brazil Joint Commission Meeting (JCM) co-chaired by the Foreign Ministers of the two countries is scheduled for 2017 in Brazil. This mechanism discusses the entire gamut of the bilateral relationship.
Important Bilateral Visits:
Regular high level bilateral visits have provided a sustained impetus to the growing relationship between India and Brazil. From the Indian side Vice President S. Radhakrishnan (1954), Prime Minister Indira Gandhi (1968), Prime Minister Narasimha Rao (1992 – for Earth Summit), President K.R. Narayan (1998), Prime 2 Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh (2006, April 2010 and June 2012), Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi (July 2014) and President Pratibha Patil (2008) have visited Brazil while President Fernando Henrique Cardoso (1996), President Lula (2004, 2007 & 2008) and President Dilma Rousseff (March 2012) reciprocated from the Brazilian side. At the invitation of Prime Minister, President Michel Temer visited Goa in October 2016 to attend the VIII BRICS Summit (15-16 October) and paid an official visit on 17 October, 2016. He was accompanied by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. José Serra, Minister of Agriculture Mr. Blairo Maggi, Minister of Industry, Foreign Trade and Services, Mr. Marcos Pereira and large official and business delegations. The delegation-level bilateral talks focused on the areas of mutual interest to further strengthen the decade-long strategic partnership and carry it forward with renewed vigour. As a result, three Memorandums of Understanding and an Agreement have been signed in diverse fields.
Recent Ministerial visits from India include: Shri P. Chidambaram, Finance Minister (Nov 2008), Shri S.M. Krishna, Minister of External Affairs (August-September 2009), Smt. Preneet Kaur, Minister of State for External Affairs (May 2010), Shri Jairam Ramesh, Environment Minister (July 2010), Shri Jyotiraditya Scindia (September 2010, April 2011), Shri Sharad Pawar, Agriculture Minister (September 2010), Shri Anand Sharma, Commerce, Industry and Textile Minister (June 2012), Smt Jayanthi Natarajan, Minister of state for Environment and Forests (June 2012), Shri Beni Prasad Verma, Steel Minister (February 2013), Shri Ajay Maken, Minister of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation (February 2013), Shri Salman Khursheed, Minister of External Affairs (October 2013) and Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman, MOS for Commerce and Industry (July 2014). In March 2015, Minister of Agriculture, Shri Radha Mohan Singh visited Brasilia to attend the second BRICS Agriculture Ministers Meeting. In the same month, Minister of Science and technology, Dr. Harsh Vardhan attended the Second BRICS Science and technology Ministers meeting in Brasilia and also he had a bilateral meeting with the Brazilian Science and Technology Minister Mr. Aldo Rebelo. Shri Nitin Gadkari, Minister for Road Transport, Highways and Shipping attended the 2nd High Level Global Conference on Traffic Safety: Time of Results, from November 17-19, 2015 in Brasilia, which was inaugurated by the President of Brazil. Shri Jawhar Sircar, CEO, Prasar Bharati signed an MOU on behalf of Prasar Bharati with EBC, the Brazilian counterpart on exchange of materials on February 17, 2016. Shri Ram Vilas Paswan, Minister for Consumer Affair, Food and Public Distribution visited Brazil from August 16-19, 2016.
The visits from Brazil included: Celso Amorim as Foreign Minister (April and July 2007 and again in September 2009 for Ministerial meeting in WTO-Doha Round and as Defence Minister in February 2012); Minister of Health, Jose Temporao (July, 2008); Minister of Industry and Foreign Trade Mr. Miguel Jorge (March and October 2008); Minister of Defence Nelson Jobin (March 2010); Minister of External Relations Antonio Patriota in March 2011 for IBSA Ministerial and bilateral meetings and in December 2011 for India-Brazil Joint Commission Meeting; Ms. Katia Abreu, Minister of Agriculture of Brazil in November, 2015 and Ambassador Mauro Vieira, Minister of External Relations who visited India in November 2015 for the 7th India-Brazil Joint Commission Meeting. The Brazilian Agriculture Minister, Blairo Maggi attended the BRICS Agriculture and Agrarian Development Ministers’ Meeting India on September 23, 2016. Mr. Fernando Coelho Filho, Minister of Mines and Energy visited Delhi from November 5-7, 2016 to attend Petrotech 2016 and hold other meetings on sidelines of Petrotech.