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04/04/2013
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Joint Communiqué Egypt – Brazil

Joint Communiqué Egypt - Brazil

1. The President of the Federative Republic of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff, and the President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, Mohamed Morsi, met in Brasilia on the 8th of May 2013, on the occasion of President Morsi´s State Visit to Brazil, to examine the prospects of bilateral relations, as well as to exchange views on key issues of the international agenda.

2. The two Presidents agreed that the visit by President Mohamed Morsi, which is the first visit by an Egyptian Head of State to Brazil, launches a new stage in bilateral relations and unveils new opportunities for the future.

3. The two Presidents noted the shared values and interests of Brazil and Egypt, two major developing nations committed to economic development with social justice in an environment of democracy, peace, and solidarity.

4. The two Presidents welcomed the process of strengthening bilateral cooperation initiated in 2011, which aims at developing initiatives in key areas to development, such as agriculture, health, environment and social policies.

5. President Dilma Rousseff announced the intent of the Brazilian Government to continue supporting the efforts undertaken by Egypt at this crucial moment of its history to foster the social development of its people. Both Heads of State pledged efforts to share knowledge and experiences in promoting social programs against hunger and poverty. Underlining the importance of food security and small farming, President Dilma Rousseff expressed the intention of the Brazilian Government to implement with Egypt a project inspired in the “Purchase from Africans for Africa” Program, an initiative developed with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP). In response to a demand from Egypt, President Dilma also stated that the Brazilian Government is ready to intensify the exchange and sharing of experiences in the promotion of social development.

6. They acknowledged the existence of wide and unexplored fields of cooperation, including science and technology, environment, renewable energy, education, and culture, among others. President Dilma Rousseff noted with satisfaction that President Morsi would hold a meeting with representatives of the Arab community in São Paulo.

7. The two Heads of State shared a common view on the necessity to intensify the exchange of sectorial missions in addition to resuming the activities of the Brazilian-Egyptian Joint Commission as strategies to raise cooperation to a level compatible with the development of both countries and to extend that cooperation to various fields. They reiterated the purpose of expanding and strengthening mutually beneficial cooperation in strategic areas, such as the field of Science, Technology & Innovation (STI) and the military field.

8. The two Presidents welcomed the signing of Agreements and Memoranda of Understanding between Brazil and Egypt and have expectations that those still under negotiation will soon be concluded. They share the view that the new legal instruments are a reflection of both the multifaceted character of the bilateral relationship between the two countries as well as of a growing convergence of interests between Brazil and Egypt.

Trade and Investment

9. They recognized with satisfaction the dynamic growth of bilateral trade, which reached the record level of US$ 2.96 billion for two consecutive years, in 2011 and in 2012. The current amount of bilateral trade is six times higher than the amount registered in 2003. They agreed also that the growth potential of bilateral trade is far from exhausted and that economic and commercial relations could benefit from greater mutual knowledge. In this sense, they announced the decision to intensify the exchange of business missions and official delegations as a means to foster trade and investment, promote balanced trade and encourage direct investment between both countries.

10. On this front, President Dilma Rousseff noted with satisfaction the announcement of President Morsi participation on the following day in an event convening Brazilian and Egyptian business representatives in São Paulo. For his part, President Morsi welcomed the intention of the Brazilian Government to organize a business mission to Egypt in the near future.

MERCOSUR-Egypt

11. The two sides recalled the MERCOSUR-Egypt Free Trade Agreement, signed in August 2010, as an instrument that will contribute to sustainable growth in bilateral trade, as well as in economic exchanges between the two countries. Taking note, with satisfaction, of its ratification by Egypt, Brazil informed that the Agreement will soon be submitted to the National Congress.

Political Dialogue

12. On the international front, the two Presidents underscored the shared values of democracy, human rights, cultural diversity, multilateralism, promotion of sustainable development and peace, and international security.

13. They recognized the growing importance of coordination between Brazil and Egypt in international forums in a manner consistent with the important role exercised by both countries in their respective regions and with their responsibilities as major actors in the international arena. They agreed that the strategic dialogue maintained by the two countries must be bolstered and expanded to include new areas, with a view to promoting the objectives and shared interests of the bilateral relationship, in addition to undertaking joint actions to address the key challenges of a changing global order.

United Nations Reform

14. The Presidents agreed that democracy should guide not only the domestic politics of States but relations between States within the international system as well. They shared the view that to this end reform of the United Nations, above all the Security Council, is essential to enhance the organization´s representativeness, legitimacy, and effectiveness in the 21st century. The Presidents stated that reform of the Security Council will be complete only when it encompasses the creation of new seats both permanent and non permanent, with greater participation for developing countries. The two Heads of State reaffirmed the objective of stepping up efforts on behalf of the urgent reform of the Security Council.

Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflicts

15. The Presidents underlined the importance of permanent diplomatic efforts and mediation to prevent conflicts and protect civilians threatened by violence. They coincided with the view that the international community must be steadfast in its efforts to value, pursue, and exhaust all available peaceful and diplomatic means to settle disputes, in accordance with the principles and objectives of the United Nations Charter.

Middle East Peace Efforts

16. The two Presidents welcomed the admission of Palestine as an Observer State to the United Nations. They expressed concern at the lack of progress in the Middle East Peace Process and agreed that a solution to the Question of Palestine is essential to ensure peace, stability, and development in the region. They called for the prompt resumption of effective negotiations and underscored the importance of ensuring an environment conducive to the resumption of negotiations, and also of the active engagement of the international community for reaching a final settlement. In recalling the primary responsibility of the UNSC in maintaining the international peace and security, they noted that there is a need for the Quartet to reassess its approach and method of work in order to have a more effective role, including reporting periodically to the international community through the Security Council. The two Heads of States reiterated the need for Israel to withdraw from the Occupied Palestinian Territories, as well as their support for a sovereign, independent, democratic, contiguous, and economically viable Palestinian State, based on the 1967 borders, having East Jerusalem as its capital, living side by side with Israel in peace and security. They reiterated that both countries condemn the Israeli construction of settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, which constitutes a violation of International Law and is harmful to the peace process. Brazil welcomed the Egyptian mediation of a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas in November 2012 and reaffirmed its appreciation and support for the effort of Egypt in favor of intra-Palestinian reconciliation and of conflict prevention and resolution in the region. They also called for Israeli withdrawal from all Occupied Arab territories.

Situation in Syria

17. With regards to the situation in Syria, the two sides reaffirmed their support for the legitimate aspirations of the Syrian people, condemning unequivocally all acts of violence against civilians and violations of human rights, and highlighting the primary responsibility of the Syrian Government in ending the violence. Brazil and Egypt underlined the need for the cessation of violence, as an essential component in a political transition process led by Syrians with the support of the international community. The two Presidents concurred in the view that the Final Communique of the Geneva Action Group provides a consistent basis for the resolution of the Syrian crisis and reaffirmed their opposition to any further militarization of the conflict. They called on all Syrian parties to exert serious efforts with a view to negotiating a political solution based on the Geneva Communiqué. They underlined the destabilizing impact of the crisis on the neighboring countries and emphasized the urgent need for further support to countries hosting refugees. In addition, they expressed their full support for the Special Joint Representative of the UN and the Arab League, Lakhdar Brahimi, in finding a political solution to the crisis. In view of the deterioration of the humanitarian situation in Syria, they called upon all parties to allow and facilitate immediate, safe, full and unimpeded access of humanitarian organizations to all in need of assistance.

Nuclear Disarmament

18. While noting that the continued existence of nuclear weapons constitutes a threat to mankind and to international peace and security, Brazil and Egypt reiterated their commitment to the achievement of a world free of all nuclear weapons. The Heads of State expressed concern with the persistent role of these weapons in military and security doctrines, as well as with the diversion of vast resources to the continued modernization of nuclear arsenals, which could be better employed in cooperation for socio-economic development and promotion of peace and stability.

19. The two sides agreed that the present review cycle of the NPT, to be concluded in 2015, should result in an acceleration of the implementation of nuclear disarmament obligations under Article VI of the Treaty. As partners in the New Agenda Coalition, Brazil and Egypt are committed to redoubling their efforts so that steps towards the complete elimination of nuclear weapons are taken by nuclear weapon States.

20. The Heads of State regretted the postponement of the 2012 Conference on the establishment of a Middle East zone free of nuclear weapons and all other weapons of mass destruction and recalled that the convening of the Conference is an essential element of the current NPT review cycle. They expressed their expectation that the Conference will be held as soon as possible and urged for the participation of all countries of the region in this initiative.

Iranian Nuclear Issue

21. The Heads of State agreed that a solution for the Iranian nuclear issue can only be achieved through diplomacy. They expressed their support for the continuation of negotiations between Iran and the P5+1, on the basis of reciprocity and a step-by-step approach and consistent with the NPT, as well as for enhanced cooperation between Iran and the IAEA, with a view to clarifying outstanding issues related to the Iranian nuclear program. They considered that a possible unilateral military action, besides representing a violation of the UN Charter, could bring unpredictable consequences for the peace and security of the whole region. The Heads of State reasserted the right of Iran to develop research, production and use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, in conformity with the obligations under its safeguards agreement with the Agency and the NPT.

International Financial Crisis

22. The two Leaders highlighted the improvement of financial market conditions in the world economy, even though the recovery remains weak and unemployment rates remain high, especially in advanced economies. They exchanged views about the challenges the crisis present to the economic performance of the emerging and developing economies. On this front, they pointed to the importance of ensuring greater compatibility between strategies to combat the crisis and efforts to promote growth and create jobs, while avoiding negative spillovers from extended periods of monetary easing in advanced economies.

Reform of the International Financial Institutions

23. The two sides reiterated their commitment to reforming the international financial institutions, which need to adapt to the growing relative weight of the emerging and developing countries in the global economy. In this context, they underlined the importance of urgent implementation of the 2010 IMF Quota and Governance Reform, and of continued progress towards an agreement on the quota formula and the 15th General Quota Review by January 2014.

WTO

24. President Mohamed Morsi congratulated President Dilma Rousseff for the results of the selection process for Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO). President Dilma Rousseff thanked the invaluable support of Egypt for the victory of the candidacy of Ambassador Roberto Azevêdo to the position of WTO Director-General. Aware of the relevance of the World Trade Organization, both Leaders agreed that successful, ambitious, comprehensive and balanced conclusion of the multilateral trade negotiations under the Doha Development Round Mandate will contribute to sustainable economic growth, and should be inclusive and development oriented. The coming WTO Ministerial Conference in Bali in December should reach a balanced outcome that takes into account the needs and expectations of developing countries, as well as of all Members.

Inter-regional Cooperation

25. The Presidents underscored the importance of South-South dialogue and cooperation as a means to contribute to a world order founded on greater justice, solidarity, and inclusion. They reiterated their commitment to strengthening the inter-regional cooperation mechanisms with a view to promoting South-South cooperation and coordination. They stressed the importance of enhancing their bilateral coordination in various South-South entities. In this context, President Morsi expressed Egypt´s interest in and encouragement of the efforts of BRICS and IBSA in various fields. Both countries reiterated their commitment to strengthening cooperation mechanisms between the South American continent and the Arab countries and between the South American and African continents through the South America-Arab Countries Summit (ASPA) and the South America-Africa Summit (ASA). They noted that both the III Summit of ASPA (Lima, October 2, 2012) and the III Summit of ASA (Malabo, February 22, 2013) were highly successful and agreed to further engage in the strengthening of the two mechanisms.

LAS

26. The Presidents concurred on the importance of strengthening the institutional framework for cooperation between Brazil and the League of Arab States (LAS). In this light, they recalled the opening of the LAS mission in Brasilia and Brazil´s desire to obtain special representation to the League in Cairo. Brazil and Egypt announced the decision to work with other interested parties to lay the necessary legal groundwork for Brazil to obtain special representation to the LAS.

27. Upon conclusion of their meeting, the two Heads of State expressed their determination to continue their efforts toward deepening relations between Brazil and Egypt and tapping fully into their vast potential at the bilateral, inter-regional, and multilateral levels.

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