Política Externa Brasileira

The Brazil-Arab Countries Economic Forum: a strategic space for Brazil’s international trade relations, by Murilo Vilarinho

Undoubtedly, trade may be understood as a pivotal aspect of stabilizing and development on the international scene. Therefore, according to Brazilian authors Nogueira and Messari’s thought, in their book Teoria das Relações Internacionais: correntes e debates, notwithstanding people’s selfishness, trade is able to help support society by means of cooperation among states, because welfare can increase and hence provide individuals with some progress.

A few days ago, Brazil and Arab countries took part in a specific Forum, where their interests were negotiated. This crucial space has been orchestrated for sometimes, thanks to the efforts from assertive Brazilian diplomacy, and the Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce, which has come to play a precious role in bridging the gap between the Arab nations and Brazil.

The international relations between Brazil and the Arab nations have experienced up and downs in the long run. Nevertheless, our current diplomatic position, based on tolerance, universality, self-determination, and repudiation to the clash of civilizations,   can be identified as favorable to political, economic, and trade exchange, in accordance with Amado Luiz Cervo’s comprehension, retrieved from his book Inserção internacional: formação dos conceitos brasileiros.

The significance of trade among the Arab nations and Brazil was emphasised by President Temer in his speech during The Brazil-Arab Countries Economic Forum, which was held in São Paulo, this year. ( The Palácio do Planalto, 2018).

In agreement with President, when Aloysio Nunes, the Brazilian Minister for foreign affairs, visited the Middle East, he declared that countries from it desire to invest in Brazil. In face of this, President felt that it is paramount to visit these societies, considering a policy of trade diversification among them, a great Brazilian opportunity for establishing a lot of commercial agreements, for instance.

By and large, it can be aided, thanks to 17 diplomatic representations, which are localized in territories that belong to countries from the Arab League. This idea was endorsed by President Temer.

The event, held in São Paulo, received a great backing from the Arab countries, which also want to strengthen trade ties with Brazil. In view of this, Khaled Hanafy,  General Secretary for the Union of Chambers of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture for Arab Countries, has affirmed that Brazil and the Arab nations ought to map out the principal needs from their markets and to facilitate the flow of information among them.

Furthermore, according to Mr. Hanafy, in the article União das Câmaras Árabes: negócios do Brasil com países árabes podem subir de patamar, written by Ana Cristina Dib, the Forum shows as a front-page, taking potential and strategic trade between both people to be explored into account.

Mr. Hanafy also highlights that strategic partnership among Brazil and the Arab countries in trade terms seeks, to some extent, increase not only business relationships from USD 20 billion to USD 5 trillion, but also creates many opportunities, first and foremost bring Brazilians and Arabs closer together. (DIB, 2018).

Besides, pursuant to Hanafy’s talk, it also important to stress that Brazil is a relatively closed market in relation to the size of its economy. Therefore, international trade accounts for only 17%. In this sense, there is still enough space to grow.  As regards the Arab world, there is a great opening around 70%. Moreover, part of this opening may be targeted at Brazil through a strategic alliance. (DIB, 2018).

In this sense, a great commercial interest in Brazil has been underscored, according to Mohamed Abo El Dahab, the Suez Canal Economic Zone’s director (SCZone). There are several opportunities to the Brazilian entrepreneur in the Suez Canal since the latter can finish your product in Egyptian region, adding value, and hence it can be exported at low costs into the European Union. For instance, Egypt has suggested attributing a certificate of origin to the Brazilian products, with the aim of becoming them free of the customs fees. As a result, it might solve a lot of problems in terms of expenses and business logistics, considering the demands from Brazilian entrepreneurs. ( DIB, 2018).

Notwithstanding negotiation with some countries from BRICS, The Arabs countries want to attract Brazilian entrepreneurs in particular. In brief, trade cooperation among Brazilian and Arab entrepreneurs has been safeguarded, what represents a chief undertaking for the nation.

Trade relations between both societies can bear fruit. Although these relations are ancient to some extent, there is still much to do to truly guarantee an assertive trade establishment between people.

On the whole, it is therefore high time that Brazil puts this matter on the diplomatic and strategic agenda, since partnerships such as these coming from relations between Brazil and the Arab countries can fuel national growth and development.

Finally, perhaps it can have a direct impact on Mercosur, because Brazil is one of the most important parts in this commercial arrangement. This organisation can, to some extent, be another space where Brazil will apply to expand possible successes achieved if partnerships are accomplished. In view of tall these considerations, in fact, it may be inferred that the Brazil-Arab Countries Economic Forum is a strategic and meaningful mechanism for Brazil’s international trade relations.


BRAZIL. The Palácio do Planalto (2018, April 4). Discurso do Presidente da República, Michel Temer, durante Palestra aos Participantes do Fórum Econômico Brasil-Países Árabes. Retrieved April 4, 2018, from  http://www2.planalto.gov.br/acompanhe-planalto/discursos/discursos-do-presidente-da-republica/discurso-do-presidente-da-republica-michel-temer-durante-palestra-aos-participantes-do-forum-economico-brasil-paises-arabes-sao-paulo-sp.

CERVO, Amado Luiz. Inserção internacional: a formação dos conceitos brasileiros . São Paulo: Saraiva, 2008.

MESSARI, Nizar e NOGUEIRA, João Pontes. Teoria das Relações InternacionaisRio de Janeiro: Elsevier, 2005.

DIB, Ana Cristina .(2018, April 4). Egito quer atrair empresas brasileiras para se instalarem na Zona Econômica do Canal de Suez. Comexdobrasil. Retrieved April 4, 2018, from https://www.comexdobrasil.com/egito-quer-atrair-empresas-brasileiras-para-se-instalarem-na-zona-economica-do-canal-de-suez/.

______________. (2018, April 6). União das Câmaras Árabes: negócios do Brasil com países árabes podem subir de patamar [The Union of Arab Chambers: Brazil’s businesses with Arab countries may be enhanced]. Comexdobrasil. Retrieved April 6, 2018, from https://www.comexdobrasil.com/uniao-das-camaras-arabes-negocios-do-brasil-com-paises-arabes-podem-subir-de-patamar/.

About the author

Murilo Vilarinho, Doutor em Sociologia e docente na Universidade Federal de Goiás.

How to cite this article

Cite this article as: Editoria, "The Brazil-Arab Countries Economic Forum: a strategic space for Brazil’s international trade relations, by Murilo Vilarinho," in Revista Mundorama, 09/04/2018, https://mundorama.net/?p=24524.

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