Brazil economy minister resumes dispute with France over Amazon

Issuance of: change:

Rio de Janeiro (AFP) – In decidedly undiplomatic terms, Brazil’s economy minister resumes a dispute with France over deforestation in the Amazon, becoming ‘irrelevant’ to the European nation, and is told where to direct its criticism. He said it was risky.

Following in the footsteps of far-right President Jair Bolsonaro, who mocked France’s first lady Brigitte Macron when she quarreled with her husband Emmanuel over the Amazon forest fires in 2019, Economy Minister Paulo Guedes dropped his gloves in 2019. is. Comments on Tuesday’s business meeting.

“One time a minister came from France. He said, ‘You are burning the forest.’ I told him, ‘You are burning Notre Dame.'” Speech to the Brazilian Association.

“I mean, what a ridiculous accusation. Notre Dame was in one block and you couldn’t stop it from burning. We have a wider area than Europe and you criticize us.” An event that has gone viral online.

“You better start treating us right or I’ll tell you to fuck yourself.”

Geddes, an ultra-liberal economist trained at the University of Chicago, said Brazil and France trade less than China, at $7 billion to $120 billion.

“You are becoming meaningless to us,” he said, arguing that it was time for France to approve a proposed free trade agreement between the European Union and the South American bloc’s Mercosur.

The deal has been stalled by European concerns that agricultural production in Brazil, the world’s largest beef and soybean exporter, is destroying the world’s largest rainforest.

Since agribusiness ally Bolsonaro took office in January 2019, average annual deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon has increased by 75% compared to the previous decade.

Bolsonaro, who is set to be re-elected in October, exchanged impassioned words with Macron on the issue on social media amid a spike in Amazon forest fires in 2019.

It escalated to Bolsonaro sharing a photo post of the two president’s wives side by side on his supporters’ Facebook, with the caption, “Do you understand why Macron is persecuting Bolsonaro?” was given.

Geddes also jumped into the fray, calling Brigitte Macron “really ugly”.

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