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Cablegate: Brazil: Ambassador Further Discusses Biofuels with Dilma

VZCZCXRO6505
PP RUEHRG
DE RUEHBR #1973/01 2611857
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 181857Z SEP 06
FM AMEMBASSY BRASILIA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 6688
INFO RUEHRG/AMCONSUL RECIFE 5461
RUEHSO/AMCONSUL SAO PAULO 8064
RUEHRI/AMCONSUL RIO DE JANEIRO 2893
RUEHAC/AMEMBASSY ASUNCION 5671
RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA 3931
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES 4276
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 3435
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ 4878
RUEHPE/AMEMBASSY LIMA 3171
RUEHMN/AMEMBASSY MONTEVIDEO 6472
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO 1971
RUEHSG/AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO 5788
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC
RHEBAAA/USDOE WASHDC
RUCPDO/USDOC WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 BRASILIA 001973

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON ETRD PGOV PREL EFIN EINV BR
SUBJECT: BRAZIL: AMBASSADOR FURTHER DISCUSSES BIOFUELS WITH DILMA
ROUSSEFF

REF: (A) BRASILIA 1784, (B) BRASILIA 1934

1. (SBU) Summary: Ambassador Sobel, accompanied by PolCouns and
Special Assistant, met with President Lula's Chief of Staff,
Minister Dilma Rousseff, on September 12 to discuss biofuels issues.
Rousseff said the U.S. and Brazil need to move quickly on biofuels,
but first must work through their bilateral policy relationship
before going forward with cooperation in third countries or
determining which resources may be tapped to put the policy into
action. Minister Rousseff expressed great interest in meeting with
interlocutors on biofuels (and other issues) while in New York the
week of September 18 and on a future trip to Washington before the
end of the year. See action request para 7. End Summary.

2. (SBU) On September 12, the Ambassador met again with President
Lula's Chief of Staff, Dilma Rousseff, to discuss biofuels issues.
(Previous meeting reported Ref A.) The Ambassador reported that his
meetings in the U.S. on biofuels focused on how to expand the
opportunity of biofuels development to third countries. He
reiterated the complexity of the USG interagency process, but
expressed our interest in still moving forward quickly. Dilma
Rousseff again expressed a strong interest in cooperating with the
USG. She followed-up by saying that for the last three months the
GOB has been attempting to "put its house in order" for both
internal coordination (within the many GOB ministries with a hand in
the pot, Petrobras, environmental considerations, research
institutions and the private sector) and their existing commitments
and agreements with third countries.

3. (U) Rousseff indicated that cooperation with the USG would also
require coordinating our existing agreements, MOUs, or other
consultative mechanisms. She specifically cited the NIST/INMETRO
(US National Institute of Standards and Technology and Brazilian
National Institute of Metrology, Standardization and Industrial
Quality) technical meetings in Rio September 17-22 on ethanol
standards, the GOB's history of cooperation with DOE's National
Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), and existing (but unspecified)
arrangements with the USDA. Rousseff said that, given the number of
areas in which we are already cooperating on biofuels (directly or
indirectly), that we should tap this "creativity" into a more
productive relationship. As one specific example, she said she
anticipates, like the Brazilians' ability to develop soy crops that
were well adapted to Brazilian lands, that the development of seed
varieties is one additional area to pursue.

4. (SBU) Rousseff agrees on the need to hurry the process along and
emphasized that now is "the right moment to capitalize" on the
collective experience of the U.S. and Brazil in this area. She
insisted, however, that the USG and GOB must iron out their
bilateral policy first before proceeding with any discussions
regarding cooperation in third countries or which external resources
could be tapped to assist with implementation. She was also frank
in admitting that progress would be slow for the next few weeks
given the upcoming elections, but that (unlike other ministers) she
was still focused specifically on the current government's agenda
items. Rousseff is proud of what Brazil has accomplished in their
"20 years" of experience and research in biofuels, and (as reported
in Ref B), is driving the GOB train.

5. (U) Rousseff is very interested in meeting with USG and private
sector interlocutors on biofuels and other issues, and expressed
great interest in the Ambassador's offer to assist in scheduling
such meetings. Rousseff plans to be in New York September 19-22,
and is considering a trip to Washington in the November/December
timeframe.

6. (U) Comment. Embassy Brazil is coordinating the appropriate
meetings with Washington. Subsequent to the Ambassador's meeting,
Rousseff was scheduled to meet with U/S Josette Sheenan while they
are both in New York this week. End Comment.

7. (SBU) Action Request: The Brazilians are interested in learning
more about how we can work together, and Mission Brazil requests
permission to release at the earliest opportunity the seven country

BRASILIA 00001973 002 OF 002


"Latin America and Biofuels Strategy" (currently being coordinated
in S/P at the Department) to Rousseff and our other Brazilian
interlocutors.

CHICOLA

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