Rousseff voices monetary concerns to Obama

April 9, 2012 at 4:24 PM
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WASHINGTON, April 9 (UPI) -- Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff Monday said she voiced concerns about several monetary issues when she met with President Obama Monday at the White House.

While recognizing the role central banks play internationally, Rousseff said she was concerned that actions taken in Europe and elsewhere would "ultimately lead to a depreciation in the value of the currencies of developed countries, thus impairing growth outlooks in emerging countries."

The United States must play a key role "not only in containing the effects of the [global financial] crisis but also in ensuring proper resumption of prosperity," she said through an interpreter.

She also touched on economic and cultural relationships between Brazil and the United States.

"All of these different prongs of our relationship have posed a very substantial outcome," Rousseff said. "But they also show that we remain short of our potentiality."

"Both Brazil and the United States of America have strategic areas in which we can cooperate, or, better said, where we can further deepen our existing cooperation," she said, listing energy and energy efficiency areas, science, technology, innovation and the transnational war on drugs.

"May I also highlight the opportunities available in areas such as the defense arena and also shipbuilding, which pose significant opportunities for cooperation?" she said. "And security is also another field for a prosperous cooperation without a shadow of a doubt."

Obama, who spoke first and didn't mention international monetary matters, remarked on the "extraordinary progress" Brazil has made under Rousseff and her predecessor from "moving from dictatorship to democracy, embarking on an extraordinary growth path, lifting millions of people out of poverty, and becoming not only a leading voice in the region, but also a leading voice in the world."

He also said the U.S.-Brazil relationship has made great strides as well.

"[Our] bilateral relationship, our trade and investment is reaching record levels, which creates jobs and business opportunities in both countries," he said.

The two countries also have seen an "extraordinary expansion" of people-to-people contacts, including what he called an "unprecedented exchange" of math, science and technology students between Brazil and the United State.

He said the meeting provided the leaders a chance to discuss a variety of global issues, such as global economic growth, the Middle East and progress made in the Open Government Partnership to increase transparency and accountability, and reducing corruption.

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