13 Mar 2023, 13:41
Carolina Kyllmann

German ministers seek to strengthen trade and climate action ties in Brazil and Colombia

Clean Energy Wire / Handelsblatt / dpa

Germany’s economy and agriculture ministers seek to intensify strategic cooperation with Brazil and Colombia on trade and climate action, they said. Over a six-day visit to the South American countries, Robert Habeck and Cem Özdemir aim to build up partnerships on raw materials, the green transformation of industry, climate and forest protection, and an intensification of cooperation in energy policy with a focus on green hydrogen. “Brazil and Colombia, with their renewable energy potential and significant raw material deposits, play a key role in global climate protection and the transformation of our economies towards green, sustainable models,” Habeck said ahead of the visit. Germany wants to “jointly build green value chains across the Atlantic for more prosperity and climate protection,” he added. Discussions about the EU-Mercosur (Common Market of South America) free trade agreement is also on the agenda, as the two blocs agreed to present a signed treaty by July, reported Handelsblatt. However, the EU wants to negotiate additional environmental requirements before agreeing, writes the newspaper. Mercosur primarily exports agricultural products to Europe. “More sustainability and strategically strengthening our trade relations – with the Mercosur agreement, we have the chance that both go hand in hand,” Özdemir told news agency dpa.

This is the latest in a series of visits German politicians have made to Brazil since president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva took office on 1 January. Chancellor Olaf Scholz, as well as environment and economic cooperation ministers Steffi Lemke and Svenja Schulze have already visited the country. Lula da Silva vowed to protect Brazil’s rainforest, which had been deforested more aggressively under the previous regime.

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