O que é este blog?

Este blog trata basicamente de ideias, se possível inteligentes, para pessoas inteligentes. Ele também se ocupa de ideias aplicadas à política, em especial à política econômica. Ele constitui uma tentativa de manter um pensamento crítico e independente sobre livros, sobre questões culturais em geral, focando numa discussão bem informada sobre temas de relações internacionais e de política externa do Brasil. Para meus livros e ensaios ver o website: www.pralmeida.org. Para a maior parte de meus textos, ver minha página na plataforma Academia.edu, link: https://itamaraty.academia.edu/PauloRobertodeAlmeida;

Meu Twitter: https://twitter.com/PauloAlmeida53

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/paulobooks

Mostrando postagens com marcador Andres Oppenheimer. Mostrar todas as postagens
Mostrando postagens com marcador Andres Oppenheimer. Mostrar todas as postagens

segunda-feira, 9 de setembro de 2019

Trump-Bolsonaro: decididos a intensificar a relacao - Andres Oppenheimer

Aparentemente, os dois presidentes estão decididos a avançar a cooperação bilateral. Resta saber se as burocracias e os interesses econômicos de parte e outra vão cooperar com o intento.

Trump, Bolsonaro could change political map
President Donald Trump's economic nationalism has seriously hurt U.S. ties with its closest allies around the world, but it may result in an unprecedented alliance with Brazil's right-wing populist government.
by Andres Oppenheimer 
Texarkana Gazette, Sep. 9 2019 @ 12:28am

President Donald Trump's economic nationalism has seriously hurt U.S. ties with its closest allies around the world, but it may result in an unprecedented alliance with Brazil's right-wing populist government.
That could change Latin America's political map.
In a Sept. 2 tweet, Trump confirmed that he is negotiating a bilateral trade agreement with Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro, whom friends and foes call "Latin America's Trump." Trump met with Brazilian foreign minister Ernesto Araujo at the White House on Aug. 30 to move ahead with trade talks.
Judging from what Araujo told me in an extended interview hours after the meeting, the two governments are talking about a forging special relationship between the two biggest economies of the Americas that would go beyond trade.
Washington and Brazil want to "move forward with a very ambitious free-trade agreement, which has been a dream for Brazil for many years, but had been hindered by anti-American biases of previous (Brazilian) governments," Araujo told me. "We are going to go ahead with that now."
Araujo added that, "We have wasted many opportunities for cooperation in the past because of the anti-American sentiment of former Brazilian leaders, which did not correspond with the feelings of the bulk of Brazil's population."
Trump and Bolsonaro "share a world vision," Araujo said. Over the past 30 years, there has been a "progressive erosion of national sovereignty," caused by ideas pushed by multilateral organizations such as the United Nations, he added.
When I asked him if a U.S.-Brazil trade deal would automatically result in Brazil's withdrawal from Mercosur — the South American common market that includes Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay — the foreign minister did not exclude that possibility.
Under Mercosur rules, no member country can sign a bilateral trade deal with third parties without the other bloc members' participation.
Araujo said that Bolsonaro has already talked with Argentina's President Mauricio Macri about relaxing Mercosur rules to allow a U.S.-Brazil trade deal. But he conceded that a victory by Argentina's front-runner opposition candidate Alberto Fernandez in the Oct. 27 elections would endanger Mercosur's existence.
Araujo said that Fernandez, who has former leftist populist Argentine president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner as his running mate, is part of the "Sao Paulo Forum, a group that coordinates leftist parties and anti-democratic projects in Latin America."
"If a project with that kind of vision wins in Argentina, that creates difficulties for Mercosur, because Mercosur is not just a trade bloc but also a pro-democracy bloc," Araujo told me. "We have a very clear and very strong democracy clause in Mercosur."
If Trump is reelected, and barring anything unforeseen in Brazil, we might see a new political map in Latin America.
Brazil — Latin America's biggest economy — could become Trump's top partner in the region, and could effectively pull out of the Mercosur trade bloc.
That would among other things pose huge problems for Argentina if Fernandez wins the elections there. Brazil is Argentina's top export market, in part thanks to Mercosur's preferential tariffs.
If a leftist government in Argentina is left out of Mercosur, Argentina would have few places to go for credit but China.
The best thing that could happen would be for Brazil to lead its Mercosur partners to a regional free-trade deal with the United States. The worst scenario would be that Argentina, with nowhere else to go, becomes more China-dependent than ever, much like Venezuela has in recent years.

quinta-feira, 30 de outubro de 2014

Relacoes Brasil-EUA: alguma chance de melhorar? Hummm -- Andres Oppenheimer (MH)

Don’t expect a U.S.-Brazil honeymoon soon
Andres Oppenheimer
Miami Herald, October 30, 2014

The big question among Brazil watchers in this capital is whether newly re-elected President Dilma Rousseff will improve her government's ailing ties with the United States during her second term. Most are skeptical that she will.
Despite Rousseff’s statement after a telephone conversation with President Barack Obama on Tuesday that both leaders will take “all possible measures” to revamp bilateral ties, and that their foreign ministries will start talks to reschedule a previously canceled Rousseff visit to Washington, few diplomats or foreign-policy experts believe there will be a significant improvement in Brazil-U.S. ties during Rouseff’s second term.
The reason is that Rousseff’s foreign policy is run by her left-of-center Workers Party’s leftist wing, which prioritizes Brazil’s ideological alliances with Venezuela, Argentina, and other leftist-ruled neighboring countries over improving relations with Washington. And that’s not likely to change anytime soon.
Rousseff, who won Sunday's elections in Latin America's biggest country with a meager 51.6 percent of the vote, has focused her foreign policy on strengthening South America’s economic and political blocs, including the MERCOSUR trade bloc led by Brazil, Argentina, and Venezuela.
Under MERCOSUR’s rules, which were strongly criticized during the campaign by opposition leader Aecio Neves, no member country can unilaterally negotiate a free-trade deal with non-member countries, such as the United States. Rousseff’s critics argue that, to revamp Brazil’s stagnant economy, the South American country badly needs more trade and investment with the United States and Europe.
Ties between Brazil and Washington hit a low last year, after Rousseff suspended a hard-negotiated trip to Washington following disclosures that the U.S. National Security Agency had spied on her.
“We don't think there will be a huge shift in Rousseff’s second term, neither in economic nor in foreign policy,” says Joao Augusto de Castro Neves, a Brazil analyst with the Eurasia Group political-analysis firm. “Given the economic challenges that she is facing, she may be pressed to make some changes to take distance from her so-called Bolivarian nationalist interventionist policies, but they will be very slow and gradual changes.”
Thiago Aragao, of Brazil’s Arko Advice political-consulting firm, says that Brazil’s foreign policy is unlikely to change “because Dilma (Rousseff) will be even more dependent on the Workers Party than before.” He added, “She will have to govern with a more divided congress, and turning her back to the Workers Party would amount to political suicide.”
The only thing that might change in Brazil’s foreign policy might be a trend to make fewer subsidized loans from its BNDES national development bank to Venezuela, Cuba, and other government allies, Aragao said. “We may see a small decrease in the amounts of these loans, but no change in the general foreign-policy mindset.”
Peter Hakim, a leading Brazil analyst with the Inter-American Dialogue think tank, is more optimistic. Rousseff is expected to reshuffle her economic and foreign-policy teams during her second term, which will give both sides an opportunity to revamp their ties, he said.
Other Brazil watchers note that Marco Aurelio Garcia, Rousseff’s powerful point man for relations with Venezuela, Cuba, and other leftist governments, might soon retire.
U.S. officials are known to be skeptical about Rousseff’s political will — or political capacity — to dramatically improve ties with Washington, citing among other examples the fact that Brazil has not replaced its ambassador to the Washington, D.C.-based Organization of American States in several years. Many U.S. officials take that as a sign that Brazil wants to weaken the OAS in order to strengthen UNASUR, CELAC, and other diplomatic groups that exclude the United States.
My opinion: Both Brazil and the United States are to blame for their tense bilateral ties, which are hurting both countries.
Brazil is hurting itself by essentially giving away its foreign policy to the extreme left of the Workers Party. It has resulted in Brazil’s near automatic support for dictatorships around the world, from Cuba to the Middle East, and damaged Brazil’s economy by isolating it from the world’s biggest markets.
And the United States, in addition to the NSA spying fiasco, has not helped mend fences by, among other things, refusing to support Brazil's bid for a United Nations Security Council seat, while at the same time supporting India's bid.
I hope I'm wrong about this, but despite both Brazil and U.S. statements after Rousseff’s re-election signaling a mutual desire to press the re-set button, it’s not likely to happen anytime soon.

segunda-feira, 28 de julho de 2014

Mais crônicas do nanismo diplomatico - Andres Oppenheimer (MH)

“O Brasil passou dos limites em relação a Israel”
Por Andres Oppenheimer
The Miami Herald, 28/07/2014

Enquanto a maioria dos países condenou a violência em Gaza, na maior parte dos casos culpando ambos os lados e dirigindo críticas em variados níveis a um e a outro, o Brasil passou dos limites ao simplesmente endossar a versão do grupo terrorista Hamas para o conflito — indo além até mesmo de países como o Egito e a Jordânia em suas ações contrárias a Israel.
Em nota emitida em 23 de julho, o governo da presidente brasileira Dilma Rousseff declarou: “Condenamos energicamente o uso desproporcional da força por Israel na Faixa de Gaza, do qual resultou elevado número de vítimas civis”.
E acrescentou que seu embaixador em Israel foi chamado ao Brasil para consultas — algo que nem mesmo países árabes como o Egito ou a Jordânia fizeram até este momento em que escrevo.
Tal comunicado alinha o Brasil com Cuba, Venezuela, Bolívia, Equador e outros países que automaticamente tomam o partido de ditaduras militares e violadores dos direitos humanos em todo o mundo. Agora, há rumores de que o Brasil pretende se manifestar contra Israel na Cúpula de Chefes de Estado do Mercosul, em 29 de julho.
Muitos outros países condenaram o “uso desproporcional da força” por Israel, contudo a maioria deles — inclusive a Argentina, que normalmente acompanha os posicionamentos do Brasil — condenou simultaneamente o Hamas pelos ataques sistemáticos de foguetes contra alvos civis israelenses, que segundo Israel deflagraram o atual ciclo de violência.
Ademais, os Estados Unidos e os 28 membros da União Europeia, que consideram o Hamas um grupo terrorista, condenaram-no especificamente pelo uso de civis como escudos humanos.
Em 17 de julho, a Agência das Nações Unidas de Assistência aos Refugiados da Palestina, conhecida pela sigla UNRWA, anunciou ter encontrado 20 foguetes do Hamas escondidos numa escola da ONU em Gaza. Poucos dias depois, a UNRWA anunciou outra descoberta idêntica em outra escola da ONU.
Após a crítica do Brasil, dirigida unicamente a Israel, o ministro das Relações Exteriores israelense emitiu uma declaração, afirmando que a atitude do Brasil “demonstra a razão pela qual o gigante econômico e cultural continua sendo politicamente irrelevante” no cenário internacional. Representantes de Israel esclareceram que a reação incomumente enérgica foi provocada pela decisão do Brasil de convocar seu embaixador para consultas.
Em contraste, os Estados Unidos e os 28 integrantes da União Europeia iniciaram suas declarações sobre o conflito em Gaza destacando o direito de Israel a se defender.
O Conselho da União Europeia, que inclui a França, a Bélgica e vários outros países com populações muçulmanas numerosas, manifestou-se no dia 22 de julho no sentido de que “a União Europeia condena firmemente o disparo indiscriminado de foguetes pelo Hamas contra Israel”.
E completou: “A União Europeia condena veementemente a convocação (do Hamas) da população civil de Gaza para atuar como escudos humanos. Embora reconheça o legítimo direito de Israel a se defender contra quaisquer ataques, a UE enfatiza que a operação militar israelense deve ser proporcional e em consonância com a legislação humanitária internacional”.
O Brasil pode ter chamado seu embaixador por razões políticas internas, bem como pelo desejo de agradar aos estados radicais árabes e africanos, em sua busca pela obtenção de um assento permanente no Conselho de Segurança das Nações Unidas.
José Miguel Vivanco, responsável pela divisão das Américas da organização de defesa dos direitos humanos Human Rights Watch, ressalta que o ex-presidente brasileiro Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva — mentor político de Rousseff — posicionou-se consistentemente em favor dos piores violadores dos direitos humanos do mundo nos anos em que ocupou a presidência.
Mais recentemente, com Dilma Rousseff, o Brasil melhorou significativamente sua participação nas votações sobre o tema no Conselho de Direitos Humanos da ONU, porém o mesmo não ocorreu em outros fóruns diplomáticos. Na América Latina, por exemplo, o Brasil permaneceu em silêncio em relação às inúmeras violações aos direitos humanos cometidas pelas forças de segurança da Venezuela, relata Vivanco.
“O Brasil está fazendo a coisa certa ao protestar com veemência contra Israel pelo uso desproporcional da força, que resultou num grande número de mortes de civis, mas ao mesmo tempo não podia deixar de condenar os ataques indiscriminados e constantes de foguetes do Hamas contra a população civil israelense”, disse-me Vivanco.
Minha opinião: Israel pode ser acusado de falhar ao evitar a morte de civis em casos específicos durante o conflito de Gaza, e o governo do primeiro-ministro Benjamin Netanyahu pode ser culpado por não fazer o bastante para acelerar a tão necessária criação de um Estado palestino, porém Israel não pode ser condenado por se defender.
Não se pode esperar de nenhum país no mundo que fique inerte enquanto um grupo terrorista dispara milhares de foguetes contra suas maiores cidades e, depois, usa civis como escudos humanos. E menos ainda quando, diferentemente do Al Fatah e outros grupos palestinos mais moderados, o Hamas conclama à aniquilação de Israel e ensina às crianças palestinas que matar judeus é uma prestação de serviço a Alá.
Se o Brasil quer ser levado a sério como uma democracia moderna e um ator internacional responsável, deveria agir como tal.

terça-feira, 28 de janeiro de 2014

A marcha (para tras?) da democracia na America Latina - Andres Oppenheimer


Los jefes de Estado y de Gobierno latinoamericanos que visitarán Cuba para participar en una cumbre regional desaprovecharán la oportunidad de reunirse con la oposición pacífica de la isla

ANDRÉS OPPENHEIMER, El País, Madrid, 26 ENE 2014 - 22:25

Lo más vergonzoso de la programada visita de los presidentes latinoamericanos a Cuba para asistir a una cumbre regional el 28 de enero no es que viajen a un país gobernado por una de las últimas dictaduras familiares del mundo, sino que probablemente no aprovechen la oportunidad para visitar también la cumbre paralela que la oposición pacífica de la isla planea celebrar al mismo tiempo.

Salvo sorpresas de último momento, ninguno de los 32 jefes de Estado y representantes de Gobiernos que asistirán a la cumbre de la Comunidad de Estados Latinoamericanos y del Caribe (CELAC) entre el 28 y el 30 de enero en La Habana, se reunirá con líderes de la oposición o con grupos civiles independientes durante su visita a Cuba.

Ni siquiera el presidente mexicano Enrique Peña Nieto, que quiere ser visto como miembro de una nueva generación de líderes más modernos y menos autoritarios, tiene planes de reunirse con ningún miembro de la oposición pacífica cubana, a pesar de que los mandatarios cubanos se han reunido repetidamente con la oposición mexicana cada vez que han visitado a México.

Comparativamente, el expresidente Vicente Fox y su secretario de relaciones exteriores, Jorge Castañeda, se reunieron con líderes de la oposición durante una visita a Cuba en 2002, y la exsecretaria de Relaciones Exteriores mexicana Rosario Green lo hizo con disidentes cubanos durante una cumbre celebrada en La Habana en 1999.

En una entrevista publicada el 18 de enero en EL PAÍS, el secretario de Relaciones Exteriores mexicano José Antonio Meade dijo que “queremos desarrollar con Cuba una relación muy cercana de pleno apoyo a su estrategia de actualización económica”.

Preguntado sobre si Peña Nieto dialogará con disidentes en Cuba, Meade dijo que el presidente mexicano “participará en Cuba con una agenda que tiene que ver con la cumbre de la CELAC. Él aceptó una visita oficial y en ese marco se va a desarrollar”. Traducción: no lo hará.

El secretario general de la Organización de Estados Americanos (OEA), José Miguel Insulza, no respondió a una llamada en la que le iba a preguntar si pensaba reunirse con líderes opositores durante su visita a la cumbre en Cuba.

Guillermo Fariñas, uno de los líderes de la oposición cubana que planea asistir a la contracumbre de La Habana, me dijo en una entrevista telefónica desde Cuba que la policía política ya ha hecho una visita a varios disidentes —incluyendo la bloguera Yoani Sánchez— para advertirles que no celebren la cumbre paralela.

“El régimen de todos modos va a pagar un costo político”, me dijo Fariñas. “Si permiten la cumbre paralela, el costo político sería que los medios internacionales escucharán otras voces que no sean las oficiales, que les dirán lo que el Gobierno oculta: que no hay democracia en Cuba. Y si no la permiten, eso demostrará que, a pesar de los esfuerzos mediáticos, políticos y diplomáticos que ha hecho desde 2007 para mostrar que supuestamente hay cambios en Cuba, lo que hay aquí es una ola represiva”.

El hecho de que los presidentes visitantes probablemente no se reunirán con la oposición los convierte en “cómplices” de la dictadura, y cuantos más gestos de acercamiento hagan, más ayudarán a la dictadura cubana a fortalecerse, señaló.

“Yo les diría a los presidentes de América Latina que siempre recuerden que las dictaduras son contaminantes, que no se hagan cómplices de la dictadura de los hermanos Castro, y que se solidaricen con los gobernados y los demócratas, para que el Gobierno reciba el mensaje de que tiene que cambiar”, concluyó.

Mi opinión: Estoy de acuerdo. Ya es un chiste que los presidentes latinoamericanos hayan elegido al único gobernante de facto de la región —el general Raúl Castro, que es un dictador militar bajo la definición de cualquier diccionario— como presidente de la CELAC, cuando esa organización tiene entre sus principales objetivos “promover la democracia” en la región.

Pero asistir a una cumbre de la CELAC en Cuba sin reunirse con ningún representante de la oposición equivale a darle un espaldarazo propagandístico a un régimen totalitario, y a darle la espalda a la oposición pacífica de la isla. Muchos de nosotros, que nos opusimos a los Gobiernos militares latinoamericanos en la década de 1970, aún recordamos la manera en que estas visitas de dignatarios extranjeros contribuyen a legitimar a las dictaduras.

Por supuesto, algunos presidentes visitantes alegarán que no pueden reunirse con disidentes durante una visita oficial porque deben respetar “la autodeterminación de los pueblos”. ¡Tonterías! ¿De qué “autodeterminación” hablan, si el pueblo cubano no ha tenido la oportunidad de votar libremente para determinar su futuro desde hace 55 años?

Si los presidentes visitantes no se reúnen con ningún miembro de la oposición pacífica cubana, será un día muy triste en la historia de la democracia latinoamericana.

sexta-feira, 7 de janeiro de 2011

America Latina: de volta aos tempos coloniais?

Dou o benefício da dúvida, mas o fato é que a região exporta cada vez mais produtos primários; é o caso de se dizer: para trás, a toda velocidade...

Latin America's bonanza may be short-lived
The Miami Herald, January 6, 2011

There have been big headlines in recent weeks about projections that Brazil will become the world's fifth-largest economy in five years, and that Latin America in general will become a new global economic star. But there are little-known data that should raise questions about such optimistic forecasts.
During the next 12 months, there is no question that the region is likely to do well. According to new projections by the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the region's economy will grow by a combined 4.2 percent this year, following a 6 percent growth last year.
Panama is expected to grow by 7.5 percent this year, Chile and Peru by 6 percent each, the Dominican Republic and Uruguay by 5 percent each, Argentina by 4.8 percent, Brazil by 4.6 percent, Bolivia by 4.5 percent, Colombia by 4 percent, Mexico by 3.5 percent, Costa Rica and Guatemala by 3 percent each, and Venezuela by 2 percent, the ECLAC figures show.
In several countries, it will be the eighth consecutive year of steady growth -- a remarkable feat amid the world's worst recession in recent memory. The region's steady growth, in part thanks to its exports or minerals, soybeans and other raw materials to China, has led most international financial institutions to think that, this time, the region is poised for long-term growth.
A recent World Bank report on Latin America's future, entitled ``Beyond boom and busts?'' challenged the long-held conventional wisdom among economists that countries that rely excessively on raw materials -- such as Venezuela and Nigeria -- tend to become populist, corrupt, authoritarian and ultimately poorer.
The new World Bank study asserted that ``recent evidence suggests that, overall, natural resources may indeed have a positive impact on growth.''
Translation: commodity exports saved Latin America from the impact of the world financial crisis, and may be the start of an extended period of solid growth. Several developed countries, including Canada, Australia and New Zealand, have shown that raw-material exporting countries can indeed rise to become First World economies, and many Latin American countries may be on the same path.
But in the medium and long term, there are disturbing trends that may spoil these optimistic projections.
Rather than using their current cycle of growth to invest in infrastructure, education, innovation and other future-looking endeavors that would allow them to diversify their exports -- like Canada, Australia and New Zealand did -- most Latin American countries are spending their income on feel-good consumer subsidies, while becoming increasingly dependent on a few commodity exports.
Consider these little-known -- and frightening -- figures from the U.N.'s ECLAC:
• Brazil's dependence on commodities and commodity-related manufactured goods has risen from 51 percent of the country's total exports in the early 1980s to 59 percent now.
• Venezuela's reliance on commodity-related products rose from 92 percent in the early 1980s to 97 percent now.
• In the past 10 years, Latin America's commodity exports have risen from 27 percent to 39 percent of the region's total exports.
``It's worrisome,'' says Osvaldo Rosales, head of ECLAC'S international trade division. ``While economic history shows there are no cases of successful development without diversification of exports, we're seeing that the region's exports tend to be increasingly concentrated in commodities.''
That's dangerous because the current commodity export boom may not last beyond five years, and raw material exports tend to produce fewer lasting jobs than more sophisticated exports, Rosales told me.
``The key question is whether South American countries, especially, are taking advantage of this commodity export boom to invest in key areas, such as infrastructure and education,'' he said. ``My impression is that we are not doing it.''
My opinion: I agree. While countries should take advantage of their commodities, putting their eggs in the same basket is not a smart recipe for long-term growth.
To follow the paths of countries such as Canada, Australia and New Zealand, they should use their current economic bonanza to save for a rainy day and invest more -- and better -- in science, technology, education and other areas that would allow them to diversify their exports.
Otherwise, the region's current economic growth cycle will be just another big bubble, like so many in the past.