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President-Elect Gives Up Merger of Agriculture and Environment Ministries

Jair Bolsonaro backed down after being heavily criticized for possible merger of these two ministries


President-elect Jair Bolsonaro said on Thursday Nov. 1st, in an interview with Catholic TV stations, there will be no merger of the Ministries of Environment and Agriculture in his government.

In the last few days, it was considered within the team that is setting up the new design of the ministries the fusion between Agriculture and Environment. The idea, however, was barely received by representatives of the two sectors. Facing the negative repercussion, the Bolsonaro team showed signs of retreat.

“There was a merger idea, but apparently it will be modified. By all indications, it will be two separate ministries,” said the president-elect.

He stressed that he does not want a “Shiite” Minister for the Environment and that conservation of nature can not be an obstacle to the country’s progress.

“Brazil is the country that most protects the environment. We intend to protect the environment, yes, but not create difficulties for our progress,” argued Bolsonaro.

According to him, the profile of an environment minister is that of “a person focused on protecting the environment without the Shiite character, as it was in other governments.”

So far, four ministers have been defined: federal deputy Onyx Lorenzoni for Civil House; economist Paulo Guedes for Economics and General Augusto Heleno for Defense, as well as astronaut Marcos Pontes, for Science and Technology.

Merger of Ministries

The president-elect’s team has evaluated mergers in ministries that can reach 15 to 17 folders. There are currently 29 ministries. In addition to the Super Ministry of Economy, which will include Finance, Planning and Industry, the Civil House will also join the Secretariat of Government, which will be headed by Federal Deputy Onyx Lorenzoni.

The Ministry of Science and Technology will be united to Higher Education. There will also be a merger of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport. Social Development will unite Human Rights and a woman linked to social movements will be considered for the position. There will also be a merger between the Ministry of Justice and Public Security, where federal judge Sergio Moro is being considered.

There is a doubt regarding the Ministry of National Integration, if it should join the Cities and Tourism. The ministries of Defense, Labor, Mines and Energy, Foreign Affairs, Health and the Institutional Security Office will be separated.