Dr. Oliveira interviewed by BBC Brazil on the impacts of the US-China trade war on Brazil

Como a guerra comercial entre EUA e China pode afetar o Brasil

(How the trade war between the US and China may affect Brazil)

Excerpts translated by Gustavo de L. T. Oliveira


Gustavo Oliveira (…) believes that the two countries should reach agreement on these tariff issues in months. “What is happening is a realignment, in which you have less US exports to China and more exports from Brazil and other countries to China.”


Gustavo Oliveira explains that China can not count on Brazilian soybeans to replace the American, since Brazil directs much of the national production (43 million tons) to feed the domestic market. Brazilian exports suffer from political instability, as demonstrated by the recent national truck drivers strike. In addition, China imports almost two-thirds of the world’s soy production. “Brazil and the US each export more than a third, and all other countries added account for less than a third. Taking the US or Brazil out of the equation basically means having to get all the soy from the rest of the world and all the Brazil to serve the Chinese market. All importers other than China would have to import exclusively from the US. This is an unrealistic situation due to various logistical, market and contract issues,” says the researcher.


For Oliveira (…) to think about the impact of the commercial war with an analysis restricted to agribusiness is to assume that everything that favors the sector is good for the country. “It’s not that simple,” he says. “This is a conversation that has taken place within a framework that treats Brazilian agribusiness, steelmaking and mining as the equivalent of Brazil’s interest.” Yet a major crisis for Brazilian agribusiness can be a good thing for thousands of landless families, for millions of small farmers, and for many other sectors of Brazilian society that have a different view of agribusiness development,” Oliveira said in Beijing.

The friction between China and the US shows how vulnerable Brazil is, being a major exporter of agricultural products and minerals. “It is very exposed to the advances and setbacks of negotiations between Beijing and Washington, in which Brazilian companies and state do not even have any weight. Brazil is hostage to a neocolonial model.”

For the full length report in Portuguese, see: https://noticias.r7.com/economia/como-a-guerra-comercial-entre-eua-e-china-pode-afetar-o-brasil-07072018