Show the fangs on the Facebook Live, where he compares the Frente de Todos with communism but, even so, the Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro They do not fight with Argentina or with its government. On the contrary, the bilateral trade numbers mark an increasing trend after hitting bottom in May, in the middle of the pandemic, and some few products even show better values than in the same month of 2019.
In terms of politics, there are no shortages of gestures either: there is currently no meeting at the door between the two presidents, but there are increasingly solid bridges of contact that are translated into concrete facts. As the exceptional authorization to Argentina to access a key drug in treating the most serious Covid-19 patients. To do this, the Bolsonaro government lifted the blockade that it had imposed, like other countries, on the export of key medical supplies and drugs in the midst of a health emergency.
The medicine in question is called Midazolam. Is about a sleep inducer that is applied to patients most affected by the coronavirus who should be treated with respirators. A few weeks ago, the Minister of Health of the Nation, Ginés González García, had communicated with the Argentine ambassador in Brasilia, Daniel Scioli. He asked him to take the possible steps to access this drug that today is lacking in much of the world as a result of the pandemic. Brazil produces it, he told her.
They say, from the mission in Brazil, that They were days and weeks of “moving heaven and earth with half a cabinet” until they approved the export of 22 kilos of the drug, the equivalent of 1.5 million ampoules. Each of them corresponds to a dose. The laboratory that acquired them is Gobbi – Novag SA, as specified by national government sources to Perfil. They would embark for Argentina in the first days of December.
Overcome the first verbal crossovers during the hottest peak of the 2019 presidential campaign, Alberto Fernández chose not to respond to the provocations of his neighbor, as irrational as they are chronic at this point. The first fell like a slap in the face on the honeymoon of optimistic seduction, shortly after Scioli’s landing as diplomatic representative and after having had a pleasant meeting. If even the former governor was surprised and made a formal complaint. The next ones, they let them pass.
In the Casa Rosada they read it as part of Bolsonaro’s public conversation with the hard core of his space who likes to swarm on social networks as a lost patrol of the Cold War. The true thermometer, they point out, is measured by facts and numbers: trade, which shows some recovery, and the trust that has been built in just a few months as practical bridges over the obvious ideological cracks.
Perhaps the clearest signal has been given in one of the last photos that Scioli showed on his Twitter sharing an evening with the Brazilian Foreign Minister, Ernesto Araújo and the Secretary for Strategic Affairs, Admiral Flávio Viana Rocha. The ambassador had already had private appointments with both of them. More relevant still, Deputy Eduardo Bolsonaro was at the table, next to the former Buenos Aires governor. Undoubtedly, the most provocative of the progeny of the neighboring president and the same one who at the time mocked Fernández’s son, Estanislao, with a post on his networks. Still, he advises his father on the foreign agenda and is a bond in which Scioli invested particular energy.
In La Rosada they read Bolsonaro’s rudeness on Facebook as his public conversation with the hard core of his space that likes to swarm on the networks as a lost patrol of the Cold War.
In the first half of the year, with the world plunged into the depths of the pandemic, the Brazilian market was one of the most affected to the point that it lost its first place among Argentina’s trading partners. China replaced it between April and May as the main destination for national exports. Already then, from the Foreign Ministry, they explained that said fluctuation corresponded to the dynamics that the world had acquired: Beijing had overcome the peak of the crisis before the rest of the countries and, slowly, it reactivated its engine with a certain advantage. However, rationality was of little use in the face of the devastating scenario with Argentine exports down 57% in the April year-on-year comparison. Only in May would they hit bottom with just $ 383 million.
Since June, the trend reversed at a moderate pace until reaching September with a value that doubled the lowest amount in 2020: 772 million dollars, the second month with the highest export value so far. It is still 4.8% below the same month in 2019 but some products show values higher than those of a year ago. Among them, the set of manufactures of agricultural origin had a 41.2% inter-annual increase in September, being the first month with positive rates since February, before the pandemic hit trade.
And as for exports of manufactures of industrial origin, the fall slowed, from 75.7% year-on-year in April to 15.8% in September. After fuels and services, trade in industrial products has been one of the most affected by the pandemic compared to agricultural products and food, a sector that has held up in better conditions in the context of a global collapse.
The exchange with Brazil reflected the same dynamics. In 2019, it concentrated 16% of the total exported by Argentina and 35% of the industrial manufactures sold by the country. With or without Bolsonaro on the other side, both the national and provincial governments and the private sector understand that Brazil is the main commercial partner and the first buyer of Argentina. So, From the Secretariat of International Economic Relations, a strong bet was made to heal this flow with a plan of more than 200 promotional actions.
Some Industrial products, such as automobiles and auto parts, medicines and personal hygiene products, among others, surpassed the exportable records of 2019. As well as some foods and beverages in the dairy branch, soybean oil, fish fillets and products of economies regional such as wine, plums, olive oil, pears and tomatoes.
“November 30 will mark the 35th anniversary of the Foz do Iguazú agreement, which in 1985 was signed by Raúl Alfonsín and José Sarney and established the bases for integration between Argentina and Brazil in matters of trade, productive coordination, creation of mutual trust in the nuclear field, education and culture, “recalled Foreign Minister Felipe Solá. And he added: “In all this time, Brazil and Argentina had presidents of all signs but the essential condition of the relationship, which is the strategic association between the two peoples to integrate with the rest of South America, was not altered. and to project ourselves to the world with greater negotiating power. “
In 2019, Brazil concentrated 16% of the total exported by Argentina and 35% of the industrial manufactures sold by the country. With or without Bolsonaro, it is the country’s main trading partner.
Scioli had marked that November day on the calendar for Bolsonaro and Fernández to emulate the fraternal embrace or, at least, bump their fist or even salute each other. Everything indicates that it could not be: the moods of both sides would not be given. So In the calendar of the Argentine embassy in Brasilia there is a new highlighted day: that of March 26 of next year, 30 years after the signing of the Treaty of Asunción that gave shape to the bloc.
Perhaps then, with Argentina already in the pro tempore presidency and the expectation placed on the full incorporation of Bolivia, the predisposition is different. Brazil keeps the key to frank entry since only the ratification by the Brazilian Congress remains. That is part of the territory of Eduardo Bolsonaro, head of the Foreign Relations committee of the Chamber of Deputies. The one sitting to Scioli’s right in the dinner photo two nights ago.
MB / DS