Event debates commercial opportunities between Brazil and Canada

The most recent edition of the CCBC Foreign Trade Meeting also addressed the results of the mission of Brazilian entrepreneurs to Sial, in April 

By Sérgio Siscaro

In 2021, one of the conclusions of the participants in the third edition of the Brazil-Canada Foreign Trade Meeting was that bilateral trade between Brazil and Canada offered plenty of room for expansion. One year later, these perspectives seem to be confirmed, with the trade flow between the two countries rising by about 22% and reaching US$ 7.478 billion (FOB). And it is in view of this favorable outlook that the Chamber of Commerce Brazil-Canada held the 4th Brazil-Canada Foreign Trade Meeting at the end of May to discuss the opportunities opened up by the increased relations between the two countries. 

The recognition of this advance was celebrated during the event by the Brazilian Ambassador to Canada, Pedro Henrique Lopes Bório. “The relationship is at an exceptional level of maturity. And it is very solid, since Canada has been an investment partner in Brazil for more than 100 years,” he said. The diplomat emphasized the potential for partnerships between the two countries for the production of fertilizers, recalled the recent agreement to expand Brazilian exports of meat to Canada and said he was optimistic about the conclusion of the trade agreement between Canada and the Mercosur countries.   

“The negotiations are now resuming. The agreement must have a modern basis that includes very solid social aspects – including those related to issues in which Canada is very pioneering, such as relations with indigenous peoples. We are convinced that it is possible to achieve a good technical result within a reasonable time frame”, he stated. The ambassador also announced that a defense agreement between the two countries is practically concluded, which includes the sale by Embraer of 80 E195-E2 aircraft to Canada’s Porter Airlines. The deal, which includes the production of components in Québec, is estimated at $5.82 billion. 

Once again present at the Foreign Trade Meeting, the commercial and economic counsellor of the Canadian Embassy in Brazil, Bonny Berger, also highlighted the long-standing relationship between the two countries and pointed out the possibilities for complementarity between the two economies – as in the case of food and fertilizer production. “The current situation, marked by the impacts of the pandemic and the war in Ukraine, offers a unique opportunity to expand and strengthen our bilateral relations – especially in the area of food security.”  

She also stressed the progress of the negotiations of the agreement between Mercosur and Canada, as well as the joint participation of Brazil and Canada in international fora, such as the G-20, the Organization of American States (OAS), the Lima Group, and the latest edition of the United Nations Conference on Climate Change (COP-26).

Back from Sial 

One of the highlights of the fourth edition of CCBC’s Brazil-Canada Foreign Trade Meeting was the report on the participation of a group of Brazilian businessmen in the Salon International de l’Alimentation (Sial), held between April 20 and 22 at the Palais des Congrès, in Montreal, in a mission organized by the Chamber. 

Besides being able to present their products at CCBC’s institutional booth at Sial, the participants had the opportunity to undergo a true immersion in the Canadian food and beverage market – including meetings with potential Canadian business partners and visits to points of sale, scheduled by the Chamber. 

Dinners were also held for VIP guests, in which Canadians were able to experience up close the Brazilian flavours. And the initiative seems to have hit the participants’ taste buds: representatives of the local press published their positive impressions about the dishes prepared by Chef Mariana Valentini, thus contributing to establish a favorable perception of Brazilian ingredients in Canadian territory. 

During the Brazil-Canada Foreign Trade Meeting, the commercial assistant of Concepta Ingredients, Vanessa Geraldi Bonesso, the commercial director of GeneSeas, Gabriel Pires, and the executive director of Samba Fruits, Etienne Beauregard, were able to talk a little about their successful experiences when participating in the CCBC mission to Sial.

Commercial Opportunities 

The event also brought together representatives of associations representing sectors of the Brazilian economy with great potential for insertion in the Canadian market. In a panel mediated by CCBC’s Vice-President of Foreign Trade, Fernando Marques,  participated the responsible for the international department of the Brazilian Association of High Decoration Furniture Industries (Abimad), Joelma Silva; the international director of the Brazilian Association of Biscuit, Pasta, and Industrialized Bread and Cake Industries (Abimapi), Rodrigo Iglesias; and the international business manager of the Brazilian Association of the Personal Hygiene, Perfumery and Cosmetics Industry (Abihpec), Gueisa Silvério. In common, the three evaluated that the Canadian market offers very interesting opportunities for Brazilian exporters – provided that they seek to study the market beforehand, in order to establish the most appropriate business plan for their operations. 

Regarding this point, the 4th Brazil-Canada Foreign Trade Meeting also disclosed the possibilities offered by CCBC for companies that evaluate an operation in Canada.  “Many times, companies have doubts as to whether their product would be accepted in the Canadian market. At CCBC, we have a specific market intelligence area, which conducts preliminary research to see if Canada would be potentially interested in a given product or service. If so, we communicate with the interested company and seek to identify the best strategies to serve this market,” stated CCBC’s Institutional Relations director, Paulo de Castro Reis, on the occasion. 

He also added the importance of guiding companies with regard to the narrative they will use to market their product in Canada – preferably by communicating to the potential consumer information about the context in which their production takes place, as well as the company’s adherence to social and environmental responsibility policies. “Before buying a product, Canadians buy a story. These points are important to raise the opportunities for success in that market.” Castro also mentioned the Brazil Hub, a recent CCBC initiative that makes it possible to support Brazilian companies that want to internationalize their business in Canada.