Cape Verde’s prime minister wants greater cooperation with Brazil in energy and finance sectors

14 October 2009

Sao Paulo, Brazil, 14 Oct – Cape Verde’s prime minister Tuesday in Brasilia called for greater cooperation between Cape Verde and Brazil in the energy sector and opening of credit lines during a meeting with Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

“We want to increment Brazil’s participation in the construction and fossil fuel and renewable energy sectors,” José Maria Neves told Portuguese news agency Lusa on an official visit to Brazil, accompanied by Finance Minister Cristina Duarte.

The same interest was also expressed to Brazil’s Foreign Relations Minister, Celso Amorim, who met Neves for a lunch at his ministry.

Another subject covered at the meetings was reconversion of Cape Verde’s debt to Brazil into investment projects in the education sector.

The US$4 million debt dates back to 1983 and was the result of a loan from the Bank of Brazil for the modernisation of Cape Verde’s telecommunications.

Na agreement was reached last year to reconvert the debt and the project is currently under the approval process with Brazil’s National Congress.

The rise in bilateral trade, which has seen significant growth over the last few years, was also on the cape Verdean prime ministers agenda for discussions.

Neves said he believed it was important for the two governments to continue insisting on the need for businesspeople to invest in shipping regular lines between the countries.

From 2003 to 2008 trade between Brazil and Cape Verde rose from US$9 million to US$39.6 million and these figures could be even higher if informal bilateral trade were considered, which is significant, particularly with Ceará state. (macauhub)