Brazil's 'extensive research' in farming can be of help to Qatar

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A senior official of the Brazilian embassy in Doha says Qatar Investment Authority, specifically Hassad Foods, has expressed interest in acquiring land in Brazil.
Gulf Times | 28 November 2014

Brazil's 'extensive research' in farming can be of help to Qatar

Brazil's "extensive research" in agriculture can help Qatar attain a sustainable food security programme, a senior official of the Brazilian embassy in Doha told Gulf Times.

Charge d'affaires Viviane Rios Balbino said the Brazilian Agricultural Livestock Research Company, known as Embrapa, conducts agricultural research and studies on various topics such as animal agriculture and crops.

Linked to the Agricultural Ministry of Brazil, Embrapa has the technology and expertise needed to help Qatar in agriculture, according to Balbino.

"On the more concrete side, something immediate is agricultural machinery. We have quite a few industries in Brazil and we could offer that easily," she said.

The embassy official noted that Qatar Investment Authority, specifically Hassad Foods, has expressed interest in acquiring land in Brazil.

But Balbino admitted that few legal constraints have been hampering the plan.

"The partnership is being re-assessed. Maybe if we can think of many different plantations or fields it would be easier than having one big project," she said.

"We haven't really explored what Hassad Foods have in their plans for Brazil. We only know they have this interest but we are not sure exactly what kind of crops they would like to grow," Balbino said. But she expressed optimism that the project is something to be explored.

Citing the recent visit of Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff to Qatar, Balbino said opportunities presented by both Qatar National Vision 2030 and the 2022 FIFA World Cup were explored.

The embassy official said that HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani and President Rousseff had agreed to establish strategic partnership in some fields of co-operation such as gas, defence, transport, infrastructure and investments.

"Qatar has sent a large mission to Brazil during the 2014 FIFA World Cup which was the start of the fruitful co-operation in the field of sports," she added.

Brazil's Minister of Sports also visited Doha recently for the "Doha Goals." She had the opportunity to meet with both the Supreme Committee on Legacy and Delivery and Qatar Olympic Committee.

Qatar also forged a joint venture with Brazil on gas exploration early this year, Balbino recalled.

She said that Qatar Petroleum International has signed an agreement with Qatar Shell and acquired a 23% stake at the BC10 platform (Parque das Conchas) project offshore in Rio De Janeiro.

Purchased for $1bn, the embassy official noted that the project is one of the main investments of Qatar and Brazil. Qatar has also purchased 5% stake in Banco Santander Brasil, a huge multinational bank, amounting to $2.7bn.

About Small and Medium Enterprises, Balbino said it is something they have not explored yet due to some constraints such as distance between the two countries. Instead, Brazil is focusing more on bigger businesses.
Original source: Gulf Times
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