Brazil provides new data to the USA


By Claudia Mancini, Gazeta Mercantil (Notebook A - Page 12) - 09/03/2005

São Paulo, March 9, 2005 - The United States government (USA) will analyze, together with the private sector, new information from the Brazilian government on the fight against piracy in the country, to decide whether to maintain import tariff reductions, granted Brazilian products, through the General Preferences System (SGP). Last year, of the US $ 20 billion exported to the US, US $ 3,2 billion entered that market using SGP.

The new information was passed yesterday at a meeting of the bilateral consultation mechanism between the two countries in Washington. In the fight against piracy, copyright problems are the main focus of Americans. "Today important information has been given that will be taken into account," Richard Mills, a press officer with the US Trade Representative (USTR), a position temporarily held by Peter Allgeier, told this newspaper. "It was an informational meeting," he added.

According to ambassador Clodoaldo Hugheney, who led the group of representatives from Brazil, this week a copy of a report on combating piracy will be given to the United States since September 2004. That month, in a bilateral meeting, Brazil had already provided a report on actions taken so far. The United States makes effective measures conditional on maintaining the benefits of the SGP.

Hugheney said the deadline for the United States to examine the issue - already extended twice - expires on March 31 and there should be no further extension. According to him, the US government has given no indication as to what decision it will take. The Brazilian group yesterday had representatives from bodies linked to the fight against piracy in Brazil, such as the National Council for Combating Piracy, the Federal Police and the Federal Revenue Service.

According to the ambassador, Brazil's interest in exporting fresh meat to the North American market was also reiterated. The USTR said the health issue is being examined. Washington also complained about difficulties in exporting meat to Brazil.