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Minister of Foreign Relations of Brazil Aloysio Nunes Ferreira is on a visit to Armenia. Ahead of his visit, Mr. Ferreira wrote an article about Brazilian-Armenian relations.

"This week, I depart for Armenia on what is to be the first visit by a Brazilian foreign minister to that country. As we celebrate the 25th year of diplomatic relations, I intend, during my visit, to send a clear signal of the Brazilian government`s willingness to strengthen our bilateral relationship.

The opening in 2006 of the Brazilian embassy in Yerevan and, in 2010, the Armenian embassy in Brasília, were important milestones in the process of establishing closer cooperation and mutual understanding between our nations. President Serzh Sargsyan;s historic visit to Brasília, São Paulo, and Rio de Janeiro last year strengthened our ties like never before. On that occasion, bilateral agreements were signed in the areas of educational and technical cooperation, agriculture, political consultation, and cooperation between our diplomatic academies.

The peoples of Brazil and Armenia have a historical relationship based on strong human and cultural bonds. Brazil’s Armenian diaspora (numbering approximately 50,000, primarily in the state of São Paulo) has made valuable contributions to the development of Brazilian society, both in the private and public sectors. As citizens, they take pride in their Armenian origins while contributing to Brazil in the arts, education, business, diplomacy, and on numerous other fronts.

Similarly, Armenians are very familiar with Brazil’s popular culture, as communicated through television soap operas, soccer, and capoeira. Classical music also has its place: at least three Brazilian conductors have led Armenian orchestras. Less than a month ago, in fact, Ricardo Averbach conducted the orchestra of the Armenian National Ballet and Opera Theatre.

In the political and diplomatic arena, the convergence of views concerning major themes on the international agenda forms the basis of our close coordination in international forums, especially in efforts to build systems of global governance founded on multilateralism and international law.

As our countries overcome grave economic crises and take up once again the path towards growth, new opportunities arise for trade and investment. Furthermore, closer cooperation between Mercosur and the Eurasian Union can foster the deepening of business ties and the development of economic synergies between the two blocs.

Technical cooperation between our countries also must be expanded. As mentioned earlier, a Basic Agreement on Technical Cooperation was signed during President Sargsyan’s visit to Brazil, which will foster the creation and development of joint projects in the most varied areas. Armenia and Brazil are both interested in cooperating in areas such as family farming, child nutrition, and public health, which will yield direct benefits for our citizens.

Our peoples have enjoyed a long history of friendship and cooperation. I hope that my visit to Yerevan will make our bonds of political, economic, cultural, and technical cooperation even stronger, and thus contribute towards the development of our countries."

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