Brazil is world’s top halal food exporter

O mercado de alimentos Halal: descubra tudo sobre o assunto!

Halal is an Arabic word that means “licit,” or “allowed.” More than that, it is a concept present in the eating habits and consumption of cosmetic and pharmaceutical products among Muslims across the world. Under the Sharia, the code of Islamic laws, the followers of Muhammad are only allowed to consume products that fit into this category, as it is believed to comprise those permitted by God. In Judaism, kosher is a similar concept.

A case in point is the banned consumption of pork, ethanol, blood, and long-tusked animals, considered haram—not permissible. Beef, chicken, goat, and mutton may be consumed, as long as the slaughter is conducted as dictates a halal ritual.

The restriction includes not only the above-mentioned items, but also any product containing these ingredients in its composition, or any good that had contact with them. The stamp used on meat, for instance, must not have had glycerol of swine origin in it.

As this is taken seriously by Muslims, the appropriate method by which food is processed must be ensured. This is why companies interested in serving Muslim consumers need certification.

“As it stands today, 1.9 billion consumers throughout the world are Muslims. One out of three people are estimated to be Muslim in 2060. So you have a gigantic market, with huge potential for exploration. Furthermore, Muslim consumers are loyal. Once they identify with a certified brand, which brings quality goods, they become loyal to that brand,” Elaine Franco de Caravlho, quality coordinator for Fambras Halal, one of Brazil’s top halal certification companies.

This is a market concentrated not only in the Middle East and northern Africa, but also in countries like Brazil itself. In Indonesia, for instance, with its large Muslim population—the biggest consumer market of halal food—the certification is mandatory for exporters.

“Once the company is certified, it starts serving countries previously not served, as the halal certification is a requirement [for export], and because a halal certification is a plus,” the coordinator pointed out.

According to the latest report on the State of the Global Islamic Economy, from before the pandemic, Brazil was the world’s biggest producer of halal food. In 2019, the country exported $16.2 billion in this product type, 12 percent above the second place, India, which traded $4.4 billion.

*Reporter Vitor Abdala and photographer Marcelo Camargo traveled at the invitation of Apex-Brasil.

Source: Agência Brasil

United Nations warns of water loss in the Amazon

A new study reveals the Amazon is losing surface water | WWF

The Amazon region has water losses that pose a risk to the world, World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Secretary-General Petteri Taalas warned Tuesday as he presented a United Nations agency report on “The State of Climate Services 2021.”

“We have to wake up to this looming water crisis”, Mr. Taalas said, pointing out that water-related risks such as droughts and floods are growing globally because of climate change. “Increasing temperatures are resulting in global and regional precipitation changes, leading to shifts in rainfall patterns and agricultural seasons, with a major impact on food security and human health and well-being,” Mr. Taalas said.

“This brings changes in rainfall patterns and agricultural seasons, with major impact on food security and human health and well-being,” he added.

Over the past 20 years, terrestrial water storage – the summation of all water on the land surface and in the subsurface, including soil moisture, snow and ice – has fallen at a rate of 1 cm per year. The greatest losses are occurring in Antarctica and Greenland, but many highly populated low-latitude locations are suffering significant water losses too.

Mr. Taalas added in that the Himalayas, Central Asia, South America, Alaska, and Canada are in the same situation. “And we’ve also seen water losses in South America, like in the Amazon region, which is bad news when it comes to the ecosystems there,” he said.

Asked by Valor about the danger of this situation in the Amazon, the WMO secretary-general replied that this is a “topic of concern when it comes to climate science”, mentioning a recent IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) report predicting a drop in soil moisture in the Amazon. “In the worst case scenario, that would mean that we would be risking that ecosystem. And, of course, at the moment, the main challenges in the Amazon is deforestation, one of the factors contributing to the increase in carbon dioxide worldwide.”

In the long term, Mr. Taalas added, less rain and higher temperatures in the Amazon are a risk to the entire ecosystem. South America is, of all regions, the one with the least water stress in any case, according to FAO.

According to the report, the number of people suffering from water stress, exacerbated by population growth and decreasing water availability, is expected to increase. Management, monitoring, forecasting, and early warning are fragmented, and inadequate, and global climate finance efforts are insufficient.

The report by WMO with 20 other international organizations, development agencies, and scientific institutions highlights the need for urgent action to improve cooperative water management, adopt integrated water and climate policies, and increase investment in this sector.

The situation is worsening because only 0.5% of the water on the planet is usable and available as fresh water.

Mr. Taalas noted that in the last year alone there has been a continuation of extreme, water-related events. Across Asia, extreme rainfall has caused massive flooding in Japan, China, Indonesia, Nepal, Pakistan, and India. Millions of people have been displaced and hundreds have been killed. And this has not only occurred in the developing world. Catastrophic floods in Europe have caused hundreds of deaths and widespread damage, he said.

“Lack of water continues to be a major cause of concern for many nations, especially in Africa. More than two billion people live in water-stressed countries and suffer a lack of access to safe drinking water and sanitation,” he said. In total, 3.6 billion people face inadequate access to water at least one month a year. Water-related risks have increased in frequency over the past 20 years. Since 2000, flood-related disasters have increased by 134%, and the frequency of droughts has grown by 29%.

Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) is considered vital. However, 107 countries are still far from reaching the goal of sustainably managing their water resources by 2030. Brazil is considered much better off and is not in this group.

To reduce water-related disasters and support water resource management, the WMO insists on the importance of climate services for water and end-to-end early warning systems, as well as sustainable investments, all of which are still considered adequate.

Source: Valor international

Brazilian importers pave way for electric cars

Electric Cars Could Save Ride-Sharing Drivers $5,200 a Year | Greentech  Media

Since all electric cars sold in Brazil today are imported, and most hybrids as well, importers are the most interested in making local conditions increasingly favorable for these vehicles.

This includes the effort for tax rebates and the creation of increasingly better infrastructure for charging batteries.

The leaders of Abeifa, the association that represents them, have spent the last few days in meetings with the government to ensure the extension of an ordinance that reduces the import tax for hybrid and electric models manufactured in countries not included in free trade agreements like Mercosur. If this fails to happen by the end of the year, the rates of this tax will rise to 35% from the current range between zero and 7%.

“The government is open to supporting this technological advance,” said João Oliveira, Abeifa’s head. The Import Tax for electrified vehicles was reduced in 2016. The last ordinance that extended the benefit is from last year. The range of differentiated rates for these models takes into account the energy efficiency of each one.

The next battle will be for changes in the rules for collecting the Industrialized Products Tax (IPI) on hybrid and electric cars. About three years ago, the government created specific IPI rates for electrified models. But the methodology created “distortions,” Mr. Oliveira said. He points out the different rates levied according to each vehicle’s weight.

But until they evolve further, batteries still represent a substantial weight in vehicles. In addition, hybrid cars carry two engines – an electric one and a combustion one –, which adds more weight. The situation often makes a hybrid car pay a higher rate than an internal combustion car.

“At the time, the Secretariat of Federal Revenue understood as heavier the vehicle with more equipment and, therefore, less essential. But the weight of the technology has the importance of, for example, reducing emissions,” Mr. Oliveira said. For him, “there is a perception in the government that there must be a specific regime for these vehicles.”

The market for electrified cars, a term that includes those charged exclusively from sockets or with the help of a combustion engine like hybrids, is still small. It represented 1.64% of sales in the country between January and September. On the other hand, the market for these vehicles has seen strong expansion. In the nine-month period, it reached 24,100 units, up 81.5% year over year.

While the country fails to offer public infrastructure solutions for charging batteries, every brand is involved in some private program of this nature. To prove that it is possible to go far with a 100% electric car, this week Porsche started an expedition with its latest electric model. During 26 days, the Taycan Cross Turismo will travel 9,000 kilometers from the South to the North of the country, passing through 14 states and 33 charging points installed by the company.

Mr. Oliveira estimates that in some countries, five or six years from now, the production cost of an electric car may be lower than that of a combustion one. Europe, where most of the electric cars sold in Brazil come from, is likely to lead the pack.

The electrified novelties have helped luxury brands to grow in the Brazilian market. In third place among importers, Porsche’s sales grew 27.7%. The German luxury brand is expected to reach an all-time high in 2021, said Andreas Marquardt, the automaker’s CEO for Brazil. Volvo, in the first place, saw an expansion of 25.6% in the period. Korean Kia is in the second place, but reported a sales drop of 12.4% in the year-to-date.

Some brands are more impacted by the weakened real and the lack of semiconductors. For Mr. Oliveira, in addition to the lack of components, the macroeconomic scenario of high exchange rate and fast inflation tends to “maintain pressure” on the sector. “Depending on the political scenario, next year may not be easy,” he said.

The sale of imported cars reached 853,000 units in 2011, when the exchange rate was at R$1.67 to the dollar. In 2018, with an exchange rate of R$3.65 to the dollar, volumes were still much higher than today, at 304,000 units.

In 2021, they will not exceed 210,000 units, according to Abeifa’s calculations. “It will be the second worst result in the last decade,” Mr. Oliveira said, only behind 2020, an atypical year due to the effects of the pandemic.

Besides a stronger real against the dollar, the importers also dream about the signing of the trade agreement with Europe. Of the 16,700 vehicles sold by Abeifa members from January to September, 65% came from Europe. On the other hand, most imported cars comes from the Mercosur, mainly Argentina. Mr. Oliveira does not believe, however, that an agreement with Europe will materialize in the short or medium term.

Source: Valor international

Government mulls injecting forex reserves into BRICS bank

The government may use part of its foreign exchange reserves to make a contribution of $100 million to $200 million in the New Development Bank (NDB), the BRICS bank, said Economy Minister Paulo Guedes. The move would not impact the value of the reserves, nor their purpose, according to his view.

“Instead of having a deposit in a certain bank, I will have paid-in capital in an international state-owned bank,” he said Monday at an event by the Federal Court of Accounts (TCU). The minister stressed that the reserves belong to the Brazilian people.

To be implemented, the proposal would require an agreement with the TCU, the minister acknowledged. He talked about how the cooperation of the Executive branch with the public spending watchdog has helped solve problems in public accounts, and cited other challenges to be tackled.

In the current legal framework, the resources to make this injection in the NDB, an obligation imposed on the partners, would need to come out of the federal budget. The move would impact the spending cap rule, which is already under a lot of pressure in 2022 because of the R$89 billion in writs of payment (court-ordered payments of federal debts known as precatórios).

“You need to use space under the cap to buy reserves and inject capital in a bank out there as if it were a recurring expense,” said the minister. However, the solution could be simpler, he argued. With the use of forex reserves, it would just be a “portfolio reallocation.”

The problem has been dragging on for a year and a half without a solution “for lack of budget space and because of the spending cap,” Mr. Guedes said. The spending cap rule limits growth in public spending to the previous year’s inflation.

The proposal was not detailed, but may pose problems. Leonardo Ribeiro, an analyst at the Senate and a public accounts specialist, said it is an inadequate idea that hurts transparency, because it is an operation outside the budget. “The proposal aims to circumvent the spending cap,” he noted. “Operationally, it may be unfeasible since the Central Bank has its own accounting and autonomy.”

The Central Bank declined to comment on the matter.

Guilherme Tinoco, also a specialist in public accounts, said the government would lose liquidity with such a move. “In theory, the government would be giving up a liquid resource to contribute to a bank that would lend to governments or companies,” he said. “Therefore, the money would have no liquidity.” Except for the amount, he sees similarities between this operation and injections made by the National Treasury to the Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES) in the early 2010s.

Source: Valor international

Central Bank will stick to inflation target in 2022

Banco Central vê inflação mais alta do que o esperado, mas diz que há  'choque temporário' de preços - Jornal O Globo

The Central Bank will not tolerate higher inflation in the short term and may raise the benchmark interest rate as much as necessary to achieve the inflation target in 2022. This was the message from the president of the monetary authority, Roberto Campos Neto, in a live-streamed interview with Valor on Monday.

According to Mr. Campos, the Central Bank will not employ an adjusted target to make a more gradual convergence of inflation, as advocated by some economists. They argue that a too intense monetary tightening could further compromise the recovery of activity.

“We are looking at 2022. The Selic will rise as much as necessary, we are not going to change the framework,” he said. “The way to generate credibility is to pursue the target. Any flexibilization affects credibility, reduces the power of monetary policy transmission.”

Currently, the monetary authority targets 2022 and, to a lesser extent, 2023 to drive the Selic policy interest rate. For each of those years, the inflation targets are 3.5% and 3.25%, respectively. The Selic is already at 6.25% a year.

The central banker said he believes that, with the current pace of interest rate hikes, the Central Bank will bring inflation to the targets. And that, looking at the 12-month index, the peak of inflation will happen in September. Then, the trajectory should start to decelerate. “We will look to see if service prices and cores [measures that exclude items with more volatile prices] will behave a little better,” he said.

Mr. Campos emphasized that it is important to control the avoid inflation expectations to lose their anchor. “It is a perverse tax, it disorganizes the production chain, the funding goes to the short term, and then the government has to subsidize long projects. We have already seen this movie,” he said.

About the criticism made by some economists that the faster inflation today may be, in part, a consequence of an excessive cut in the Selic rate, to 2% a year in 2020, Mr. Campos recalled that, at the time, the debate was about expectations losing their anchors in the opposite direction. And that the Central Bank was even questioned for not cutting interest rates even more in the face of the pandemic’s impact.

If the activity surprised positively, inflation also rose faster than the Central Bank expected – a phenomenon seen in several countries, according to the executive. He explained that the expectation was that, with the economy opening up, there would be a disinflation, because of the shift in consumption from goods to services. “It seems that there was a more structural consumption of goods,” he said.

Specifically about Brazil, besides the consumption dynamics, Mr. Campos emphasized the risks coming from the water scarcity, which add to the uncertainty outlook brought by the global energy crisis. And he gave great importance to the fiscal issue, a subject that generates much uncertainty regarding the preservation of the framework, that is, the compliance with the spending cap. “We need to turn the page to know how the [cash-transfer program] Bolsa Família and the emergency aid are going to be,” he said, adding that these two points and that of the payments of multi-billion judicial orders by the federal government and the income tax overhaul “collided.”

Mr. Campos stressed that the Central Bank does not participate in the fiscal debate. But he still defended that Brazil may be close to a turning point “in which pouring more money is not necessarily going to make the economy grow much more.” “If pouring more money is with a perception of destroying the fiscal framework, the disorganization effect of prices and the effect that this generates in the economy is going to be stronger than the beneficial effect of the new money in circulation. Doing more can mean doing less,” he said.

Mr. Campos also reemphasized the improvement in the projections for the gross debt. “We had an expectation of economists talking about 95% of the GDP,” he said. “What we see at the end of 2021 is a debt of 81%,” he continued, saying that the “balance is very similar to what we thought back there [before the pandemic].”

In the microeconomic agenda, he highlighted that there are ideas to reduce the over-indebtedness of families in Brazil. One of them, led by Senator Kátia Abreu (Social Democratic Party, PSD, of Tocantins), is to use resources from the guarantee funds of operations (FGO). This is a discussion of the National Treasury with Congress, but he defended the importance of addressing the issue. The idea is also to continue to hold debt renegotiation drives from time to time in exchange for financial education courses.

Mr. Campos denied any involvement with the revelations made by the Pandora Papers – a deep investigative journalism work that exposed offshore deals and assets of very rich and powerful people, including 300 public officials, among which Mr. Campos. He said that “everything has been stated” about his offshore company.

“I have not made any remittances to the company at any time since I came into government. I have made no financial investment in any company,” he said, adding that it is important to clarify the matter and “move forward” with the agenda.

Source: Valor international

Air cargo transport reaches all-time high in Brazil

The Air Freight Cargo Industry - Industry Today %

The demand for international cargo transport by air is quite heated. The volume of cargo transported to and from Brazil between January and August of this year reached 625.7 thousand tonnes, up 13.5% year over year and the highest since official records began, in 2000.

This is explained, in part, by the lack of containers in maritime transport, which is cheaper than air transport. And it signals that a good number of companies are resuming business with greater force after the worst period of the pandemic.

Airlines’ revenue from cargo has already exceeded 2019 levels. Besides cargo aircraft, the companies take advantage of passenger flights by transporting packages in the planes’ bellies.

Latam is the market leader in the transport of international parcels in Brazil, with a 16.4% market share (adding Latam, Lan Chile, Absa and Lan Cargo), according to August data from the National Agency of Civil Aviation (ANAC). American company Atlas comes in second place with 12.2%, followed by Korean Air Lines, with 5%.

Santiago-based Latam, which is under protection from creditors, has reaped the benefits of strong demand for international transport and had a 37.5% year-over-year growth in global cargo revenue in the second quarter, to $370 million, while passenger revenue fell 77% on the same basis, to $455 million.

“Now we are entering the high season due to the end-of-year holidays and the fruit season in South America,” said Otávio Meneguette, head of Latam Cargo. Today, freighters are taking off with occupancy rates above 90%.

The company’s expectation is to increase the capacity offered, especially when using aircraft that are not flying or have idle time, including the Boeing 777 and 787. Currently, Latam globally operates an average of 50 weekly cargo flights. In August, the company operated 44 international passenger flights departing Brazil per week, a number that should reach 85 in October.

Mr. Meneguette explained that part of the high demand came from the misalignment of the maritime chain. The lack of containers is a serious problem that impacts several sectors. On import routes from China, the average freight seen in July 2021 was 7.35 times higher than a year ago, according to data from Logcomex.

“The maritime market is huge, so any migration from it to air drives demand very quickly,” he said.

Sertrading, one of Brazil’s largest import trading companies, saw a growth of around 5% in the air cargo volume given the obstacles to maritime transport in recent months, said Luciano Sapata, vice president and partner at the company. “We have seen specific cases in which air transport is used to supply an urgent demand,” he said.

The migration is done sparingly because of the higher cost than maritime transport. Among the sectors that made this switch this year are the automotive market, electronics and technology, especially to bring in semiconductors, which are lacking in the market. The move, he said, is something specific and is likely to be reversed as transport chains return to their normal levels.

Luiz Carlos Moraes, head of the National Association of Vehicle Manufacturers (Anfavea), reinforced in a press conference last month that the automobile sector has done everything possible to keep the production chain active. “To meet production, we have the logistics areas bringing parts by plane, activating the entire network of suppliers and headquarters to have a lesser impact,” he said.

In Brazil, the good demand for cargo led Air France-KLM to start, at the end of June, a weekly route exclusively for cargo (with the model Boeing 777-200F, with a capacity of 102 tonnes) between São Paulo and Paris. “Initially, the route was a pilot project, but we have a good demand and it will be maintained,” said Enrica Calonghi, Air France -KLM cargo head for South America. With this novelty, the company now has six weekly freight routes connecting the country, compared with five before the pandemic.

The resumption of the Fortaleza-Paris passenger route (three weekly flights), on October 22, will also allow business growth due to the space available in the belly of the aircraft. With this, the company will have 25 passenger flights a week to Brazil, compared with 44 before the pandemic.

In the second quarter, the group reported total revenue of €2.75 billion, down 61% year over year. Revenues from the group’s cargo arm tolaled €894 million, up 67% year over year.

Ms. Calonghi said the cargo transport segment in Brazil is quite diversified. Agribusiness, however, has a relevant weight: more than 50% of the capacity of cargo flights from São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro to Europe is dedicated to the transport of mangoes, papayas, figs and lemons.

The good time is also a reality around the world. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) projected Monday that capacity (measured in tonnes of cargo per kilometer) would exceed 2019 levels by 8% this year. In 2022, the growth should be 13% against the pre-crisis levels. Meanwhile, global demand for passenger transport (measured in revenue passenger kilometer, or RPK) is expected to close 2021 representing 40% of the 2019 level and 61% of the pre-pandemic level in 2022.

Source: Valor international

Weak GDP growth to reduce risk of power rationing in 2022

Egypt targets 5.4% GDP growth in FY 2021/2022 | Zilla Capital

Brazil may be able to avoid electric power rationing this year, but it will be very difficult not to have outages. The risk of rationing in 2022 is even greater, and what can spare us from this is a weak economic performance, as predicted by banks and consulting firms, said Adriano Pires, founding partner and director of the Brazilian Center for Infrastructure (CBIE).

For the economist, the government is working “on a razor’s edge,” changing electricity tariffs and holding auctions to hire power generated by thermal plants, but it does not control two important variables: rainfalls and the pace of the economy’s recovery.

“We may navigate 2021 without power rationings because there will start to be some relief in November and December, with power from Jirau, Santo Antônio and Belo Monte, three giant run-of-the-river plants, which have no reservoir and only generate electricity when it rains,” Mr. Pires told Valor. “But what can happen later this year are local, scheduled outages and power line frequency drop [with appliances turning off and on again], because we have difficulty meeting the peak demand of the day.”

The big problem will be 2022, he said. This is because reservoirs may be dry after the wet season, operating at 10% of capacity. “That scenario is fearful as it could force the government to put power rationing in place next year,” he said.

“What can save the country once again from power rationing is the economy. We only didn’t have rationing and outages in the last few years because the Brazilian economy virtually didn’t grow. Forecasts suggest growth of 1%, 1.2%. This can help save us from power shortage in 2022,” he said.

This does not mean, however, a cooling of the current crisis. The levels of the reservoirs will not rise strongly, the government will have to keep thermal plants running throughout 2022 and prices will continue to be high, Mr. Pires said.

“Electricity tariffs will remain the big nemesis of inflation, because it will not be possible to turn off thermal plants next year, even as the economy grows little. I am more worried about 2022 than 2021,” he said.

In addition, as transmission lines operate at the limit, any technical problem can interrupt the power supply, the economist said. “They ask me if we are going to have a lot of power outages in October and November. It depends on the temperature. If it’s hot, we can overload the transmission lines even more,” he said.

For the consultant, who has a PhD in industrial economics from the University of Paris XIII, Brazil’s power generating mix is very dependent on the weather and water, and the country is moving forward with an energy transition without planning.

“From 2009 on, thermal plants started to be demonized all over the world. So, we left the Brazilian power generation mix very reliant on the weather. The weather has changed worldwide, and today’s electricity crisis is not a Brazilian thing,” he said.

The ESG (environmental, social and governance) energy transition is of worldwide concern, he said. “There has been a lot of demonization of coal, natural gas and even nuclear energy supply. And with an increasingly electrified world, demand continues to grow, but there is a cutback in structural supply. From now on, we can have serious problems, very high global prices and even energy shortages,” he said. “We are accelerating the energy transition, but the energies that would replace fossil fuels depend on nature, which is troubled [because of climate change].”

Power generation by gas-fired thermal plants will still have an important weight in the Brazilian mix and it is necessary to revive the supply of nuclear energy, which can meet environmental issues and growing demand, according to Mr. Pires. He notes, however, that Brazil has to abandon oil-fired thermal plants, which are expensive and polluting, and bet on gas-fired plants.

“Today, in order not to have power rationing, we are turning on thermal plants that cost R$2,000 per Megawatt-hour,” he said. A gas-fired thermal plant running 70% or 80% of the time, on the other hand, would cost R$400 per MWh, he added.

Just like scheduled power outages in 2001 to avoid the collapse of the electrical system, the current electricity crisis can weigh on next year’s presidential election, he said. “The power rationing during the Fernando Henrique Cardoso administration helped Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva to defeat José Serra. So much so that, right at the beginning of his mandate, Lula held thermal power plant auctions to avoid rationing during his government,” he said.

“If there is rationing next year, then I think it will be difficult for Jair Bolsonaro. In any case, power rationing through [higher] prices as we have today will continue next year, and [the situation of the] electricity sector will not help Bolsonaro’s reelection,” he added.

Source: Valor international

Dubai: Brazil to unveil opportunities for sustainable use of Amazon

Desmatamento da Amazônia Legal cresce 279% em 2020

Brazil’s vice-President Hamilton Mourão in Dubai today (Sep. 1) said that Brazil needs to seize the chance provided by Expo 2020 to showcase to foreigners the business opportunities that the sustainable use of Brazil’s natural heritage may provide. The statement was made during the official inauguration ceremony of the country’s pavilion at the world expo that started today in the United Arab Emirates.

“Investment attraction and the generation of employment and income in the Amazon are key to the conservation of the forest,” said Mourão, pointing out that, for the coming six months, the pavilion will serve to showcase Brazil’s potential to the world.

According to the vice-president, the message Brazil wants to bring to the Expo 2020 is linked to sustainability, which is the theme the Expo 2020 district where Brazil’s pavilion is located. “Brazil is a country that produces clean energy, with over 60 percent of its territory covered by original vegetation, with know-how in clean fuels. This is the message we want to make clear, at a moment everyone has their eyes on these issues.”

Seeking to improve the country’s global image, Mourão said the country uses a mere eight percent of its territory for food production and that, nonetheless, it manages to feed over 1 billion people across the world. “We have to intensify this discourse in a clear manner and also reiterate our commitment with our duties, established countrywide, to meet the world’s goals of mitigating global warming.”

In the vice-president’s view, the criticism on the way Brazil has handled the Amazon is unfounded. “Much is said based on small sections of the Amazon. The Amazon is vast. Most people across the world have no idea of its magnitude. The Amazon biome alone is nearly half our territory. We have to show the reality of the Amazon.”

Arab countries

Mourão noted that Brazil needs to advance its relations with Arab nations and benefit from the potential market for Brazilian food and agricultural technology in the region.

“I’ve just come from Egypt. Egypt has only eight percent of its territory available for productive activity, so food security there is a serious problem. As for Brazil, we have two topics: the provision of food and the technology we have—i.e., added value. Our agribusiness is highly technological,” he said.

Source: Agência Brasil

Dubai: Brazil expects to attract $10 bi in direct investment

Saiba onde investir de acordo com os objetivos pessoais

The Brazilian Agency for the Promotion of Exports and Investment (Apex-Brasil) reported that, with Brazil’s participation in Expo 2020 in Dubai, the country hopes to attract $10 billion in foreign direct investment and generate $500 million in exports.

The Brazilian pavilion at Expo 2020 received 12,795 visitors in the first three days of global exhibit, which opened to the public last Friday (Oct. 1) in Dubai, in the Arab Emirates.

The Brazilian structure is located near the entrance of Sustainability and attracted a large number of visitors in search of the refreshment in the desert heat, as its main attraction is a shallow pool of water on which visitors can walk.

Brazil is among the 192 countries attending the event, which should end in March 2022. The structure, with the shape of an immense white cube, cost $25 million to be built.

It is still not possible to estimate how much operations should cost at the pavilion—which will also serve as a space for welcoming government authorities and Brazilian companies. In addition to the pool, facilities include a cafeteria and an exhibition salon, which currently features a photo exhibit of Brazil, promoted by Embratur, the state-run company tasked with the promotion of international tourism in the country.

Source: Agência Brasil

Amazon savannization will expose 12 million to unbearable heat, study says

Queimadas na Amazônia e o aumento do desmatamento | VEJA

Large-scale deforestation of the Amazon, combined with the effect of climate change, will expose 12 million people in the region to extreme heat waves by 2100. These will be unbearable and physiologically intolerable levels of heat for the human body.

This is the finding of the first study to analyze the impacts on human health of both phenomena – the Amazon transformation into a savanna and climate change. There is a limit to deforestation for human survival. This means that it will not be possible for people living in Brazil’s North region to maintain their body temperature without adaptation, that is, cool indoor environments, little activity, care for children, the elderly and people with cardiovascular problems, and work schedules interspersed with breaks, for example.

Climatologist Carlos Nobre had the idea for the study “Deforestation and climate change are projected to increase heat stress risk in the Brazilian Amazon” and three other researchers executed it. They are scientists from the National Space Research Institute (Inpe) and Fiocruz. The work was published Friday by Nature’s Communications Earth & Environment.

“We studied the combined effect of climate change and savannization in the Amazon on public health in the region, in heat waves,” said Mr. Nobre, a climatologist at Inpe, an expert in Earth system modeling and author of the study. “The novelty of the study is that the combination of the two variables leads to warming rates that threaten life.”

He recalls that the study makes a conservative estimate because it does not consider population growth. In addition, there are already indicators that parts of the Amazon rainforest are on an advanced path to savannization. “There are already Cerrado animals, such as the maned wolf, roaming around there. The region has become similar to the maned wolf’s habitat,” Mr. Nobre said. Another worrying sign is that in some regions the most typical Amazon trees, which are native to humid tropical forests, are dying.

In situations of exposure to high temperatures and humidity, the human body loses its capacity to cool down, said Beatriz Alves de Oliveira, one of the authors and a public health researcher at Fiocruz Piauí. “That’s what happens to our body inside a sauna. At a certain moment, we have to get out, because the body reaches its limit and can no longer maintain the temperature at 36 or 37 degrees [Celsius],” she said. “We are already breaking records, but what the simulation shows us is a dramatic scenario in terms of losses and activity.”

She says that this is why the next World Cup, in Qatar, will take place at the end of 2022 instead of July. “In extreme heat, athletes can’t stand it.”

The researcher also says that, in the modeling, human capital indicators (health and education), urban structure and income were observed. “Municipalities with low population density will be more affected because they have low resilience, lack of health infrastructure,” she said. “If we continue like this, we will reach a point where the scenario is irreversible. When are we going to take a stance and change our reality? If we continue this way and at this pace, we will reach the limit,” Ms. Oliveira said. “The study shows this: what would be life if the Amazon did not exist, if the forest was replaced by savannah.”

“We work with two dimensions – climate change and deforestation. The first depends on the entire planet, a single country cannot stop it,” Mr. Nobre said. “But deforestation can be managed by us. We can control the cutting of trees. We can not deforest. We have to do that and we have to reforest,” Mr. Nobre said.

“The story of zero deforestation is important, but it is not enough. It is the same as saying that when I stop spending my bank account will be in the black. No, stopping spending is the first step, but you have to return what you have taken. We have to have a national and global understanding of the need to revegetate the Amazon,” Mr. Nobre said. “This scenario is not for 2100. It is for now. It is happening. The forest is on an advanced path of savannization.”

Source: Valor international