Brazil invites Qatar to take part in $400bn investment opportunities

The visiting President of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro yesterday held a high-profile roundtable meeting with the representatives of leading Qatari agencies, companies, investors and business leaders, and introduced huge investment opportunities worth over $400bn as Brazil is in the process of auctioning state companies, assets and oil & gas fields worth over $250bn.

The Qatari side was led by H E Ali bin Ahmed Al Kuwari, Minister of Commerce and Industry, who also presented the investment opportunities in Qatar and highlighted country’s robust macroeconomic fundamentals and growth prospects.

Present at the meeting were prominent Qatari businessmen, representatives from Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), Qatar Development Bank (QDB), Manateq, Qatar Free Zones Authority, Qatar Financial Centre and several of other government and private entities and dignitaries.

Sheikh Faisal bin Qassim Al Thani, Chairman of Qatari Businessmen Association (QBA), and Sheikh Khalifa bin Jassim Al Thani, Chairman of Qatar Chamber, and several ministers and top officials of President Bolsonaro’s government joined the event that explored the investment opportunities and ways of boosting cooperation.

Brazil’s new government, under the leadership of President Bolsonaro, is introducing bold reforms almost all sectors of the South America and Latin America’s largest economy. The reforms include privatization of dozens of airports, sea ports, highways, railway networks, and oil & gas fields among others aiming to improve their value and obtain higher efficiency as part of its PPI initiative (Investment Partnership Programme).

“Brazil and Qatar are economies which have a lot to offer to each other. Our respect for Qatar is very high. Both the countries enjoy strong bilateral relationships in the field of trade, investment and defense cooperation but we want to further strengthen this. We want to boost the level of trust and restore Brazil’s credibility back. I am also trying to fulfill the promises that I made before taking office,” said President Bolsonaro in his address at the meeting.

The President added: “We at Brazil have sea of opportunities for investments in several promising sectors of the economy, which is now on the right path. We already have signed agreements with Qatar with regard to avoiding double-taxation and investment protection and other areas, but we want to give greater protection for investments.” Bolsonaro also said that his government is opening up the economy to foreign investors and businesses to improve efficiency and ensure sustainable development. It is also working to be more business and investment-friendly and striving to improve the ease of doing business in Brazil to attract foreign investment to the country.

The President also noted that his government is not soft in dealing with bureaucratic hurdles or authorities, and has zero tolerance against corruption.

“The Brazilian programme of investments— the PPI— has more than $400bn in its portfolio in different sectors such as transport, oil and gas, railways and highways. We have more than 16,000km of roads in Brazil to have partnerships with private sector and foreign companies. We have the largest port of Latin America for privatization in the portfolio,” Martha Seillier, Special Secretary to the President’s Office for PPI programme, told The Peninsula on the sidelines of the event, yesterday.

Seillier added: “In addition, we have many other opportunities in new railways where we are going to build more than 1000km of rail networks to be built in green filed areas and the largest oil and gas auction in Brazil to be held in November this year with an investment portfolio of about $250bn. And the investment portfolio is getting even bigger and bigger each time our ministers meet for PPI.” She also said that since the time PPI has been established in Brazil it has auctioned state assets worth more than $55bn and these investments are already being implemented on the ground.

Asked about Qatar’s interests, she said that Brazil is already working in close cooperation with Qatar’s sovereign investment fund. “We know that QIA is already investing in Brazil and they are very much interested in keeping those investments. But it’s not only about infrastructure sector, but there are a lot of other opportunities in the civil aviation, airlines, airports and other sectors. And Brazil is open for 100 percent FDI to all sectors under the PPI portfolio.” Mansour bin Ibrahim Al Mahmoud, Executive Director at QIA said that QIA is interested to invest in some sectors of the Brazilian economy, including the stock market, and expressed to explore the opportunities in greater details. While the representative from Manateq invited to the Brazilian companies to explore opportunities and set up manufacturing facilities in the upcoming industrial enclaves and free zones. Both side agreed to have more meetings in the coming days to discuss further.

President of Brazil Jair Bolsonaro (left) and H E Ali bin Ahmed Al Kuwari, Minister of Commerce and Industry, at the roundtable meeting with top officials from Qatar and Brazil at Sheraton Hotel-Doha, yesterday.

Source from: The Peninsula