São Paulo – This Thursday (7), the Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce presented its associates with the plan of actions for 2019, which includes the promotion of three forums, two business rounds, ten missions, and the participation in seven fairs, among other activities. This year, the entity starts to implement a strategic planning focusing in 2028 and the goal to elevate the Arab countries from the fifth to the third largest Brazilian trade partner.
“In this new strategic planning, we have a definite goal to connect Brazilians and Arabs in order to promote the economic, social and cultural development,” said the Arab Brazilian Chamber president Rubens Hannun to the businessmen present. The president talked about the importance of ties other than commercial to strenghten the relation between Brazil and the Arab countries. “If there is a social and cultural basis, it will last,” he said.
This year, the Arab Brazilian Chamber will have activities in 11 countries besides Brazil. In March, the entity participates is Anufood in São Paulo exhibiting Arab importers. In the same month, also in São Paulo, a photograph exhibition from the Arab countries will be promoted, and in April a committee of Brazilian and Arab businesswomen will be launched. In May, the entity will have a stand in the food fair Aspas Show in São Paulo, featuring Arab exhibitors.
Also in the schedule is the promotion of a seminar on how to invest in the United Arab Emirates in May, and another one about the relations between Brazil and Saudi Arabia in June, both in São Paulo. The tourism fair ABAV Expo in September will feature the entity, which will also host the Brazil-Arab forum on retail in the same month in São Paulo. The countries where the entity will take missions to include Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, Egypt, Sudan, Lebanon and Syria.
The fairs in Arab countries where the Arab Brazilian Chamber will be present will include the food fair Gulfood in the UAE this month; the multisectoral Algiers International Fair to occur in Algeria in July, the beauty fair Beautyworld Middle East to be held in UAE in April; Wetex, covering sustainability, in October in the UAE; and the tourism fair Arabian Travel Market, to occur in May in the UAE.
The Arab Brazilian Chamber secretary-general Tamer Mansour gave details on the entity’s calendar to its associates and highlighted some initiatives, such as the actions in Saudi Arabia. “We will show the Saudis that Brazil has a potential (as a supplier) far beyond meat and poultry,” said Mansour. A mission will be led to that country and another one to Bahrein in April. For September, a Brazilian cultural week in Saudi Arabia is planned.
Mansour also said the entity will assist to open the Algerian market to Brazilian companies and invited the businessmen to see the potential of Arab countries such as Qatar, which is going to host the 2022 World Cup, and the opportunities in Syria and Lebanon, specially in the construction sector. There are planned actions in these four countries. “If we connect ourselves, we will elevate Brazil from the fifth to the third partner,” he said.
The Arab Brazilian Chamber president presented an overview of the entity’s operation in 2018. Last year, there was a total of 347 workdays of associates and directors in Arab countries, working with commercial promotion, deal making, cultural actions, and more. Sixteen out of the 22 Arab countries and seven non-Arab countries were visited. In Spain, for example, a deal was signed with the Association of the Mediterranean Chambers of Commerce and Industry. In Malaysia and Indonesia, the entity went looking to refine the Halal market.
The entity had a full schedule in 2018, having participated in fairs in Brazil and in the Arab countries, as well as having promoted workshops, seminars, lectures, business rounds, and missions. Two highlights were the execution of the Brazil-Arab Countries Economic Forum in São Paulo, in April, and the Arab Brazilian Chamber office opening in Itajaí in May. Approximately 800 people participated in the forum, 100 being from Arab countries. Out of the 50 panelists, 28 were Arabs. Michel Temer, then president of Brazil, spoke in the forum.
The Arab Brazilian Chamber president highlighted the research the entity has been doing on food security, the process of implementing an online certification, the elaboration of a new associative plan, and the rapprochement actions with the current government. The entity leaders already were in two meetings with the vice-president Hamilton Mourão – in one of them, he was the acting president – and presented the government a study on the importance and the potential of the Arab marked for the next four years.
The Arab Brazilian Chamber received its associates and guests to a morning meeting in the Walid Yazigi auditory at the entity headquarters. The event was followed by a talk with the economist and host Ricardo Amorim.
Translated by Guilherme Miranda