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Brazilian ambassador “mistreated” by Argentine official on trade issues

Wednesday, November 24th 2010 - 05:11 UTC
Full article 8 comments
Guillermo Moreno is known to appeal to thug tactics to intimidate and impose his criteria  Guillermo Moreno is known to appeal to thug tactics to intimidate and impose his criteria

The Brazilian financial newspaper Valor Economico claims Argentine Domestic Trade Secretary Guillermo Moreno “mistreated” Brazilian ambassador in Buenos Aires Enio Cordeiro following a discussion on alleged “informal” obstacles that the Cristina Fernández government is planning to apply on Brazilian imports.

“Angered by what is described as the dumping of Brazilian companies and uncomfortable with the growing bilateral trade surplus of Brazil, Moreno informed ambassador Cordeiro that the Argentine government was going to apply non-formal barriers on Brazilian goods”, reported Valor Economico.

However the tone and attitude of Moreno towards the ambassador was what is believed to have caused an exchange of messages between both countries Foreign Affairs ministries, trying to downplay the incident.

But Valor Economico and other Brazilian financial publications gave the incident a major display which was repeated by Buenos Aires influential Clarin, as the main headline of Tuesday’s edition.

The story refers to the alleged “aggressive tone and attitude” by Moreno, who according to the newspaper is “an official known for the tricky-thug style he appeals to when dealing with Argentine businessmen and government officials.”

The meeting allegedly occurred on November 5, when Moreno’s complaint pointed to Brazilian companies that sell in the Argentine market “products at lower prices than those charged at home”. More specifically Moreno apparently was referring to steel products. Argentina’s Economy minister Amado Boudou was also present.

As a consequence of the episode Brazil’s Deputy Foreign Affairs minister Antonio Patriota brought up the issue with his Argentine peer Alberto Pedro D’Alotto during a meeting last November 9 in Brasilia.

Valor Economico reports that the man indicated as a strong candidate to succeed Minister Celso Amorim in the incoming administration of president-elect Dilma Rousseff expressed Brazil’s disappointment and a meeting scheduled to address nuclear and energy issues turned into a “serious discussion” on trade.

The Brazilian government admits that there’s some evidence of Moreno’s complaints particularly the growing Brazilian bilateral trade surplus, “in spite of the over-valued Real”. Brazil’s surplus this year is estimated at 3 billion US dollars with imports soaring 54%.

However the items which most increased Argentine imports have not been industrial goods but iron ore and pork. With food prices in Argentina rising imports have been increasing as Brazilian pork 210%.

Apparently President Lula da Silva plans to bring up the issue directly with his peer Cristina Fernandez at this week’s Unasur summit in Guyana and if not at the Ibero-American summit scheduled for December 3 and 4 in Mar del Plata.

Brazilian diplomacy has opted to downplay the incident and let the presidents address it. But it’s not the first time Moreno has been involved in such attitudes with Brazilian officials, including the Minister of Industry and Development whom he mistreated for similar reasons.

Categories: Politics, Argentina, Brazil.

Top Comments

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  • WestisBest

    What a prat, you can't bully your way out of the situation of Brazil having a trade surplus, so Brazilian suppliers are using their economic success to undercut you...well too bad, you RGs are always going on about what a success you compete.

    Nov 24th, 2010 - 09:54 am 0
  • fredbdc

    Moreno and much of CFKs cabinet is a THUG. They all think they are above the law, that they are the LAW! It will be nice to see them get a slap from Brazil.

    Nov 24th, 2010 - 12:36 pm 0
  • Ant

    This story was denied:

    MercoPress echoes Clarin newspaper of the dictatorship.
    MercoPress misinformation, is not Argentine government target

    Nov 24th, 2010 - 04:35 pm 0
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