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China seeks to broaden trade, investments in Brazil

17 may 2011, 12:30
Chinese Commerce Minister Chen Deming said Monday during a visit to Brazil that Chinese firms plan to broaden their investment in Latin America's biggest economy, AFP reports.

During his meetings with Brazilian officials, they discussed replacing the US dollar with a basket of currencies as the default currency for international trade, according to Brazil's Trade Minister Fernando Pimentel.

"Nothing justifies that we are still using in the 21st century the same default currency as that created during the last century," Pimentel told reporters after the meeting.

But Chen was more cautious, saying it would be "best to address this subject during the next G20 meeting" of the biggest industrialized and emerging countries.

Chen, who also met with Foreign Minister Antonio Patriota, noted that China, which in 2010 replaced the United States as Brazil's biggest trade partner, was considering greater investments there.

Chinese firms are already considering about $1 billion in new investments, according to the Chinese minister, who did not provide any further details.

He said China was particularly interested in investing in Brazil's plans to modernize its infrastructure in the electrical sector.

Brazil, meanwhile, hopes to increase by at least 20 percent its exports to China, with a broader range of products, said Pimentel.

Most Brazilian exports to China currently consist of raw materials, such as oil, soybeans and iron ore.

President Dilma Rousseff has said an April visit to China marked a "significant improvement" in relations but noted that more needed to be done to improve bilateral trade, including selling more value-added products.

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