Experts agree: Brazil needs to learn how to attract more Chinese investments in logistics infrastructure to become more competitive in the world market and to establish fruitful trade partnerships with the Asian giant.
For Larissa Wachholz, a partner in the Vallya consulting group, this investment would also be in the interest of Chinese companies who, after developing the domestic infrastructure of their country, need to look outside to stay active.
Wachholz participated in a debate on Thursday (6) during the Brazil-China seminar, held by Folha de S.Paulo, sponsored by the Brazilian Agency for Export Promotion and Investments (Apex-Brasil), Banco Modal and the distributor Caoa Chery, with the support of CNI (National Confederation of Industry).
Brazil’s major needs are still infrastructure and logistics chain, areas where the national organization leaves much to be desired – and in which China has know how, said the speaker.
In this sense, a great opportunity is the “Belt and Road” initiative, a Chinese government investment megaplane to inject billions of dollars in infrastructure projects in Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Middle East and Europe. But this, said the consultant, requires coordination of an internal strategy and define concrete positions on what Brazil intends to achieve.
Roberto Jaguaribe, president of the Brazilian Export and Investment Promotion Agency (Apex-Brasil), said that China’s investment in areas such as railways, consumer goods and energy production is essential for national economic growth.
They would be investments of China’s own interest, since Brazil could prove to be a valuable partner for the productive potential capable of supplying the great Chinese consumption needs.
“Brazil is a huge strategic partner. We need to build a relationship based on economic complementarity and a great convergence that exists between the interests of both countries.”
Some of the barriers, Jaguaribe points out, are the lack of a well-defined national strategy to attract investment in key areas such as logistics infrastructure and more in-depth knowledge of the functioning of the Chinese market.
“If you ask a Brazilian businessman who wants to export, he will not be able to name a single company where he has an interest in entering his product in the Chinese market,” said Thomaz Machado, president of ChinaInvest consultancy. And the reciprocal is true, he says.
The seminar took place on Wednesday and Thursday (5 and 6) at Rooftop 5 & Convention Center, in Sao Paulo. The mediation of the debate was made by Jaime Spitzcovsky, a journalist and columnist at Folha de S.Paulo.