General Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, on Thursday received Fernando Pimentel, Brazilian Minister of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade, and his delegation, who are visiting the UAE.
Shaikh Mohammad was briefed on the outcome of economic events, discussions and meetings held by the Brazilian minister with UAE officials.
Shaikh Mohammad stressed the UAE's keenness to sign trade agreements, and economic and investment partnerships with various countries around the world, in particular with Brazil, which is one of the most important emerging economies on the global stage, adding that such agreements and partnerships would yield positive results for both countries' economies.
Fernando Pimentel reaffirmed his country's keenness to develop cooperative relations with the UAE. He stressed the prominent role enjoyed by the UAE in global trade, and his country's desire to invest in this role to develop its relations with the UAE in trade, investment and the economy.
Shaikh Mohammad and Pimentel also discussed topics of mutual concern and mechanisms to strengthen relations in the economy and investment, and ways to develop trade and industrial cooperation.
They also discussed investment opportunities in productive sectors, and the available advantages for joint projects.
Meanwhile, Sultan Ahmad Bin Sulayem, Chairman of DP World, together with a high-level delegation, has inspected progress on the first phase of the terminal operator's Embraport project, the largest Brazilian private multi-modal port terminal in the city of Santos.
The first phase of Embraport (Empresa Brasileira de Terminais) is scheduled to be completed in 2013.
It is being built on a freehold site on the left bank of the Santos Estuary with deep water marine as well as rail access adjacent to Porto de Santos, a port facility in the city of Santos, São Paulo State.
Porto de Santos is the largest Brazilian container port and the largest in South America, with 90 per cent of its cargo destined for the local São Paulo market.
The first phase of the project will have around one million TEU (twenty foot equivalent container units) capacity and will be operated by DP World.
Serve nation's interest
During his visit, Bin Sulayem, accompanied by senior company officials including chief executive officer Mohammad Sharaf and senior vice-president of Government Relations Suhail Al Banna, and senior vice president and managing director, Americas, Matthew Leech, also met with the port project partners and with more than 15 shipping lines and potential customers.
Bin Sulayem said: "Upon opening, Embraport will contribute significantly to Brazil's growth and will serve the nation's logistics interests.
"DP World is privileged to be able to utilise its extensive experience in the development and operation of this vital and strategic multi-purpose port.
"We are confident that with the deployment of cutting edge technology combined with its large capacity, and the competencies of our partners, the terminal will support the development of Santos as the main port complex in the country."
2012: strong growth
Brazil is one of the growing and developing markets that DP World focuses on. Business Monitor International's Brazil Shipping Report (BMI) believes 2012 will be another year of strong growth for Brazilian ports, which they say experienced growth of 7.1 per cent in total tonnage throughput in the first half of 2011.
BMI also expects to see more investment in infrastructure, both public and private, as ports seek to deal with growing traffic and to capitalise on increasing trade opportunities.