Having in background the chairmanship of the Commerce and Investment Development Group of Brazil’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the appointment of the new Brazilian Ambassador is indicative of his country’s inclination to strengthen economic cooperation with Iran so once the sanctions against Iran fade more, the practical phase of it will go to effect. Politically and diplomatically, Brazil believed in a diplomatic solution to Iran’s nuclear case, even when sanctions were at their peak, and so, it supported the JCPOA. While there is still the debated welching possibility of the POTUS, Donald Trump out of the nuclear deal, Brazil’s Ambassador to Iran thinks the JCPOA is a UN resolution the SC ratified and hopes the US will remain pledged to its commitments therein.
AVA Diplomatic’s Exclusive Interview with
Rodrigo de Azeredo Santos, Brazil’s Ambassador to Iran
Mr. Ambassador, first and foremost, please inform us about the positions you held before coming to Iran?
Before joining the diplomatic career, I worked for a while in the private sector of Brazil in the financial banking system. When I joined the Foreign Service, my first assignment was the embassy of Brazil in Moscow where I was the head of the economic, science and technology section. Then I moved to the embassy of Brazil in Washington D.C. in United States and there I was the head of the section that deals with financial issues, relations with the IMF and World Bank and American Development Bank or the financial aspects as well. From Washington I moved to the embassy of Brazil in Buenos Aires in Argentina, which is also a very important embassy for Brazil because our bilateral relations are very intense. In Argentina, I was the head of the Economic and Infrastructure Section because we have a lot of projects in infrastructure sector with Argentina. After return to Brazil, I was the number two at the Trade and Investment Promotion Department. This is for many years. Next assignment was in the embassy of Brazil in London where I was the number two in charge of the economic section as well. And then back to Brazil and then I was the director for the Trade and Investment Promotion Department for three years and that was before moving to Tehran in mid-January, nine months ago.
Given your background as Chief of Commerce and Investment Development at the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, how much is your appointment as Brazil’s Ambassador to Iran indicative of economic priorities in Iran-Brazil ties?
I believe it’s a good indication that Brazil likes to strengthen our economic cooperation with Iran. We already have a very good political relations for a long time. Brazil and Iran share opinions in multilateral organizations. One of the facts that can approve what I’m saying is that some years ago when Iran was having trouble with the sanctions, Brazil and Turkey tried to negotiate the nuclear agreement that was before JCPOA. And so Brazil always believed in diplomatic solution for the crisis and it showed that in the political area, Brazil and Iran always have very good relations. In the economic area, we also have progressed but we can do much more. So I believe that my assignment to be ambassador of Brazil in Tehran with my experience that I have is a good indication and I like to put all these experiences of course at the service of our bilateral relations. We are trying to foster banking relations and economic cooperation in the industrial area as well, because we already have very good relations in the agricultural area. Brazil exports lots of agricultural commodities to Iran. But we also like to see more cooperation in industrial and services sectors. And Brazil I also would like to import more from Iran.
What are the ongoing consultations between the two countries’ officials regarding oil cooperation in the Caspian Sea?
So far we have preliminary talks. I have talked to the president of Petrobras and to the director of exploration of Petrobras recently and they agreed to start preliminary talks with Iranian side. So both sides agreed and we are expecting to have a meeting either in Tehran or in Brazil to talk about it. As you know Brazil has a large successful experience in deep sea offshore exploration. So these are technologies, equipment and services that Brazil and Iranian companies together can establish joint venture and use them to explore oil in the Caspian Sea. So that is interest from both sides but they haven’t met yet. I’ve been doing this conversation from both sides, try to put them together and now we’re going to settle a meeting. So they can start this conversation. But it’s in very preliminary phases.
Has there been any consultation between the two countries’ officials to address the increase of Iran’s petrochemicals and oil products to Brazil?
Let me clarify first, as I was saying, we would like also to see more Iranian exports to Brazil. Brazil is the big importer of chemicals, petrochemicals, some bi-oil products like diesel, gasoline, fertilizers like urea. Iran is also a big producer. So whatever Iran can supply to Brazil, we are ready to discuss this, but it is very important to take note that the Brazilian government don’t buy anything. It is the private sector in Brazil who does. So that’s the message I’m trying to convey to the Iranian authorities and companies. They also have to do their part, go to Brazil and talk to the Brazilian companies. I’m also inviting some Brazilian companies to come here. Some of them are interested in importing products from Iran as well. Some are interested in establishing joint ventures to manufacture with Iranian companies and in Iranian market. Others are interested in buying those products which I mentioned from Iran. So what our government can do is to facilitate this. Also the banking relations are very important and we are working and trying to facilitate this. But the decision to buy is made by private sector in Brazil. We don’t have state companies in Brazil which buy those products, apart from Petrobras which buys for example oil products, diesel, gasoline and etc. They have distribution companies but they hire a private company to do this purchases for them. So the decision primarily is private and market-oriented. So it has to be competitive and has the right specifications. Also the quality of the products is important. So as much as I want to see more Iranian exports to Brazil it’s up to the private companies to make this deal and to move forward. I hope we’ll see this happening soon.
Last year, there was news about negotiations between Iran, Brazil and India to build an oil refinery and a petrochemical complex in Maranhao. What stage is this process going through now?
A Brazilian private group has been talking to some groups in India and China and they are still assessing which would be the best technological partner for them. As far as I know, things are moving well in conversations with Chinese companies. They are interested in these projects. Iran also can play its role and we would like to see Iran playing an important role for this refinery project in Brazil. Iran would supply oil needs for this refinery through swap in oil. They can have a swap with China for example. So this business is being developed. The Brazilian group are coming here almost every month and putting this project together with the Iranian authorities as well. Hopefully we’ll see this happening as well. This is a private project. It’s not the government project in Brazil. But it’s backed by the Brazilian government. It means that the Brazilian ministry of energy would like to see it’s happening and it would be very important if it’s in place for the economic cooperation between Brazil and Iran. We believe it’s good. It would raise the level of our economic relations with Iran. No doubt about it.
How much of Brazil’s need for chemical fertilizers is supplied by Iran?
From March 2016 to March 2017 Iran exported to Brazil US$ 42 million worth of fertilizers (urea). Today Brazil imports almost of 80% of fertilizers it needs for agriculture, an amount of over US$ 2 billion annually. I am sure Brazil could import much more of this product from Iran.
Where does Iran stand in Brazil’s market of agricultural products among other Middle-Eastern countries?
Iran is number one for Brazilian exporter of agricultural products in the Middle East. In the last year, it was 2.1 billion in Dollar. Number two for Brazilian agricultural exports to the Middle East was Saudi Arabia around 2 billion dollars. This shows also the tremendous potential of our cooperation in agriculture as well because even with the lack of banking relations, even with all the difficulties, Brazil and Iran were able to establish this partnership in agriculture which reaches very significant amount. So when we have banking relations in place, this can expand even more and to diversify to other areas like good industry and services in both ways. Always it’s important to highlight that we are very good partners but I would like to see more and develop our partnerships to develop projects in Iran and to manufacture here some machines and equipment that can be used for agriculture and agribusiness in Iran as well.
What negotiations have been carried out to extend cooperation and facilitate and manage investments between the two countries?
There are two things going in parallel. First we are negotiating with Iran on agreements on cooperation and facilitation of investment. So Brazil has developed its own model of cooperation of facilitation of investment. We have it in our Brazilian Constitution. There are some constraints about the typical O.E.C.D. model of investment. They call the O.E.C.D. Model as promotion and protection Investment agreement. In Brazil we call it promotion and facilitation agreement for investment. And we are negotiating this with Ministry of Economy and Finance of Iran. And hopefully we can see this also ready before the end of the year. That’s our wish. But we’ll have other conversations with them because we are using different models of agreements. I’m sure we can reach to a common position and define a good text of agreement for both sides and have this agreements signed. So this is one thing that would give a legal framework for our investors from both sides. The other thing is banking relations. The banking relations are important for trade and also important for investment. Because some joint ventures that would like to see in place in Brazil or in Iran, of course do need also the support of banks. So last August, the mission of the central bank of Iran went to Brazil accompanied by a delegation of Iranian commercial banks and the conversations were very good. In the banking area, we are following three ways to reach to the same objective which is the facilitation and promotion of the financial cooperation between the two countries. The first way is inviting Iranian banks to open subsidiaries, not branches in Brazil. They can purchase existing Brazilian banks or shares in the Brazilian banks, or they can open their own subsidiaries with hundred percent Iranian capital. So the central bank of Brazil explains to the Iranian banks that there is no obstacle if they want to go to Brazil. They have to fulfill the necessary requirements that the central bank of Brazil asks, the same that they do for any international bank that wants to operate in Brazil. There is no differentiation because it’s Iranian bank. So this process can take twelve to eighteen months but it’s up to the Iranian banks to decide. I’ve been talking to some of them that went to Brazil and they are considering this and they are assessing the information that they have. They know the potential of the bilateral economic cooperation. So I believe we may see this in the future. Another way is the direct links between Brazil banks and Iranian banks. We promote it in the bilateral meeting of August between Brazilian commercial banks and Iranian ones that accompanied the central bank of Iran visit to Brazil. As a result of this meeting, we already have one Brazilian bank that has signed the corresponding relation agreements with a group of the Iranian banks. So we have a good result. Today we have visited one of those Iranian banks. They told me they already are talking about LCs to be issued by the Iranian banks and confirmed directly by these Brazilian banks. So it’s very good to see that things are moving on. It’s a very early results and I’m sure other Brazilian banks will see that this is a successful case when they see the good results and good business potential to be developed with the Iranian banks. Then other Brazilian banks will come and want to do the same. So I believe we are in the right track and the third and last way that we are pursuing to increase this financial cooperation between Brazil and Iran is that we will present to the Iranian government a proposal of financing Brazilian exports of goods and services and negotiating with Iranian government the necessary guarantees. This would be a kind of umbrella agreement which will cover many sectors of industry, agriculture, services and jointly we can select some priority projects for Iran and then Brazil will provide the financing through its national development bank. We have our national development bank which also plays the role of the Exim bank and they have specific financial lines to help exports of goods and services. So this is the third way that we are working. We call it government to government bilateral financial arrangements, something similar to what Iran has signed with Austria, Denmark, Korea, Japan and Italy.
Thanks for your inclusive and extended explanations. In fact you answered some of our questions in advance. What negotiations have been conducted regarding the cooperation between the two countries’ companies in manufacturing vehicles and trucks?
Trucks not yet, but we are talking about buses. There is interest of Brazilian group and they have already signed an MOU with Iranian group as well and they have committed to invest in Iran and to manufacture here some parts, bringing technology as well to manufacture to supply the Iranian market, but also to export to some neighboring countries. So this is a very good project. This is the kind of industrial cooperation that we’d like to see in place. That’s what I’m saying to the Brazilian companies and to Iranian authorities and companies here; we don’t see Iran as a short term market to be reached. But we see it as a long term partnership that we would like to build with Iran with mutual beneficial results and the best way to reach this is by establishing this type of industrial and more value added joint ventures partnerships. This is one case that you mentioned. This can be done in transportation equipment area specifically the buses. Brazil has a very good technology and companies that manufacture in Brazil and they can come here and do the same. Also for other areas like the medical and hospital equipment, oil and gas, machines and equipment, electric engines, we have a lot that we can do together with Iranian companies, not all exports from Brazil to Iran, but to manufacture jointly here in Iran to supply the Iranian markets and neighboring countries as well.
Is there enough capacity in Iran neighboring countries to export these products?
There is a high demand in Iran for buses for example and also in the neighboring countries and also for the other goods that I’ve mentioned; medical and hospital oil and gas equipment. There is a huge market not only in Iran, but also in the neighboring countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan; countries with them Iran has very good relations and very good distribution channels. Iran has also export financing and credit insurance to support exports to them. So you have all the conditions and banking relations to explore this market in the neighboring countries.
How much was the trade balance between Iran and Brazil last year? What horizon is depicted for the year to come?
Last year, the bilateral trade was 2.3 billion dollars. Most of this, more than 90 percent is Brazilian exports. We would like to see more Iranian exports to Brazil as well. This year in the first semester, we have seen an increase compared to the first semester of last year, something like 1.5 billion US dollars. So this shows that it’s increasing. As I said even without ideal financial banking relations, we are getting good results. You can imagine when we have banking relations, this could be even better. So that’s why we are working very hard to this to happen.
What measures have the two countries’ officials come up with to further ease the economic relations in private sectors?
As I said Brazilian government don’t buy anything. But we can facilitate and promote trade and participation of Brazilian companies in exhibitions and fairs in Iran. For example this year we have Brazilian companies participate in agrifood exhibition and next year we want to increase the number of companies participating in agrifood exhibition and other exhibitions as well. In Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, we have Trade and Investment Promotion Department. We have also our agency called APEX for Trade and Investment Promotion. It’s under the umbrella of foreign affairs and is counterpart of TPO here that means the Trade Promotion Organization under the umbrella of ministry of trade. So we have something similar in Brazil. So I believe they can work together to help and facilitate business for the private sector. But everything that I mentioned, the agreements for facilitating and promoting investment and banking relations, this is also to help the private sector. So that’s the number one objective I believe to make easier for the private sector of two countries to meet and understand what their opportunities are and to do their business.
Is it not better if two governments give private sector some privileges to improve and promote trade, for example low-interest rate loans?
I have mentioned three ways that we are working on the banking relation of the financial relations and I mentioned financing from our national development bank and the guarantees from the Iranian side to projects in Iran. So this is our lowest interest rate financing, better than the private sector banks financing. So this is very competitive and very good for private sector of both countries. They can have long-term financing, more than two years, up to eighteen years, depending on sector and on the project. This is very good for the private sector of both countries. As I said, everything we’re doing is to facilitate and promotes ties between private sectors of both countries.
Brazil possesses a fine example of sustainable development and preserving natural reserves and environment. What consultations have been done between the two countries to transfer this knowledge?
We had the visit of our vice-minister of agriculture a few weeks ago and we have very good meetings with the minister of agriculture. Also our vice-minister has invited the Iranian ministry of agriculture and his team to go to Brazil in November. We are establishing what we call the Agriculture Consultative Committee to discuss various issues of cooperation in the agricultural area and one of them is cooperation on science and technology and also environmental protection and what we can do to help to develop agriculture in a sustainable way. As you said Brazil has a very good experience on this in many areas and is using the necessary technology and methods to have a sustainable development and preserve the environment but increase agriculture production. Brazil increased its productivity by investing in science and technology in agriculture. We have a state company in Brazil called Embrapa. It is the Brazilian research company for agriculture and they have for example developed new crops more resistant that gives better productivity. So to increase the productivity, you don’t need to use more land. You can increase your production without having to increase the use of land. So this is very important for nature and sustainability. And also we have a very good experience in irrigation that can be very useful. This is an important concern of the Iran. Iran has problems with water supply. So new techniques and new technologies that can be applied for agriculture and irrigation is very important to Iran. So Brazil can help Iran in cooperation on these areas for example. So in sustainable development case, we have very good success case in Brazil and we can discuss this. I believe this can be discussed in the November during this Consultative Committee on Agriculture.
If is Brazil’s pattern of economic progress and development can be applied in Iran?
I believe so. Brazil has developed very important industrial policies. For example stimulating and promoting local content. This is something Iran is doing as well and I believe it’s very important to generate jobs here, to have their own manufacturers and technology. So we understand the Iranian government position because we have done the same and we are still doing some segments and trying to promote the use of local content, not only importing but also promoting local manufacturing. So that’s why we are ready to share his experience with Iran. In all those segments that I mentioned before, we are ready to share our experience of industrial development and also in agriculture as I said before as well. Also Iran has very good experience in some areas for example in bio-medics and biotechnology and has very good developments in many areas that can also be very useful to Brazil. So we also have talks going on about bilateral cooperation on science and technology. We have a lot to exchange. Not only Brazil can bring its experience to Iran, but also Iran can bring its own experience to Brazil in some specific areas.
Some believe that a strict approach should be applied in Iranian economy and government structure similar to the one applied in Brazil. Do you agree with them or do you feel mentioned capacities suffices?
Brazil now is recovering from a period of recession. That was caused by the lack of a good fiscal policy. This is very important to limit expenditures of the government and to have expenditures of better quality as well. Since the crisis in 2008-2009 and international financial crisis, Brazil response at that time was to expand the credit from the public banks to the private sector and also offer a private sector some tax exemptions in some specific sectors that needed this support at that time. This was good for the economy at that moment for recovery and that was some kind of the anti-cycle policy to avoid the impacts of the international crisis not to affect the Brazilian economy. Brazilian economy at that time took this decision of increasing credits and decreasing taxes for some segments. So they gave up to get more revenue from some segments of the industry and agriculture in order to help them to recover from the crisis of that time. This should have been done for a while not for a long time. When you do this for a long time of course you are having more expenditures and less revenues. So this led to bigger public debt in Brazil. Because of this, there was a lot of uncertainty about the Brazilian economy and that’s why Brazil was in a recession for the last years. But now the government is back in the right track with the responsible fiscal policy and the market is responding very well. We see that we are resuming growth. But I believe any country should follow this policy of responsible fiscal policy.
Thanks for explaining about trend of economic reforms and recovery in recent years in Brazil. One of the important points in realizing the economic perspectives of the two countries is to organize joint economic sessions. When will the next meeting be and what is its agenda?
Good question. Next week I’m going to have conversation with Vice-Ministry of Economy and Finance and now it’s the turn of Iran to host the next Joint Economic and Trade Commission. It would be probably by end of November, but it is up to the Iranian government to indicate specific date. The agenda will be basically what we have discussed here; the banking relation, industrial cooperation, agricultural cooperation, bilateral investment agreements. Also really we would like to see cooperation on civil aviation. There are other agreements that we would like to sign with Iran on maritime transportation as well. There has been discussions and exchange of texts between the two countries. So it is a big and important agenda for economic and trade cooperation.
How is the status of airlines for tourists and visitors between Iran and Brazil?
That is a proposal of bilateral agreements for civil aviation. We also like to see Iranian airlines flying to Brazil. I know already an Iranian company is interested in this and we support this idea. But this also depends on specific MOUs to see moving forwards. That is the decision of airlines to fly to Brazil. But hopefully we can sign this before the end of the year and Joint Economic Commission could be a good time to do this.
How many Brazilian tourists visited Iran last year?
I can tell you the number of Iranians who went to Brazil. We have this figure in our Consulate because we give visas (2.367 in 2016 and 1.894 up to August 2017). About Brazilians who came to Iran, I don’t know exactly but I can tell that it is increasing because I see people coming all the time. Next week there will be a group of twenty or thirty Brazilians tourists coming. By the end of October, there’s another group of thirty Brazilian tourists coming. So their interest in visiting Iran is increasing. I believe something that helped a lot was something that we did which was the project of Brazilian Embassy here. We invited the Brazilian T.V. broadcast to come to Iran. They stayed one month in Iran and they showed on the most important and largest Brazil T.V. network this program about Iran in two parts and in prime time in Brazilian TV on a Friday. So a lot of people in Brazil saw Iran as it is, not what they heard about. They didn’t have many information. So they came here and they showed the country, the nature and the people. They met the people in the squares and they talk to them and they’re showing the Iranian gastronomy, culture, historical sites that attracted a lot of the attention in Brazil. I receive a lot of e-mails and messages. People say that they didn’t know that Iran is so beautiful and Iran has so many attractions. Now they want to come. So I’m sure this helped a lot. Hopefully we’ll see more and more. Because I believe this is what makes long-term relations between two countries, when people get to know each other better. I would like to see more Brazilians coming and more Iranians going to Brazil as well. Of course the direct flights can help a lot.
Is there any ongoing negotiation between Iran and Brazil regarding visa cancelation between the two countries?
We already have visa exemption for diplomatic passports only. So Iranian diplomats don’t need visas to go to Brazil and the same is done about Brazil diplomats. This has been done a couple of years ago. About ordinary passports, we still are not having negotiations. But why not? We can talk about that. So far we are not talking about this but it’s possible. This is something that both governments want, because it’s reciprocity-based. So if both governments are interested, of course they can negotiate it. But so far I haven’t heard this. Hopefully we can have it in the future but this is it doesn’t depend on us solely, it also depends on both immigration authorities to negotiate this.
Has there been any negotiation between the two countries about sports, esp. using the football knowledge or talent scouting?
I hope so and I like to see this. Two days ago, I was talking to the president of the Iranian Football Federation. Because it’s my objective to bring the Brazilian national team to a friendly match here. We have to schedule this. It is not easy because their schedule is very busy and also FIFA defines some specific dates for friendly matches. So you have the window opportunity and there is a lot of demand. I advocate this. I am calling the Brazilian Federation and say you have to be in Iran. They like the idea and hopefully next year is my objective. But it depends not only on me, but on that on their agenda as well. So but this is something I personally involved trying to make it happen. We also would like to motivate more cooperation in sports. Iranian football is also improving and Iran was the number two national team to qualify for FIFA World Cup next year. In volleyball as well, Iran played very well in the last international tournament and it shows a lot of development. In Brazil also volleyball is very popular and famous. We have good quality as well in players and coaches and medicine for sports. So I believe there’s a good ground for cooperation in this area. We would like to bring some Brazilians to Iran to have this kind of cooperation. This is our agenda as well.
Why isn’t presence of Brazilian football coaches in Iran significant?
Brazilian coaches are still very much demanded in Brazil. But some coaches have been around in some countries in Asia and the Middle East. But this is up to the Iranian club to invite them to come. I believe this is a very good idea and also having cooperation for teaching kids in football schools or the volleyball schools and bringing Brazilian professionals to work together in clubs and institutions which are teaching to the kids is very good idea. We have success cases with other countries that we could also develop with Iran. I believe it’s a good project.
What plans has the Embassy of Brazil in Tehran considered to strengthen cultural ties between the two countries?
Good question. In the first week of October, we will have a Brazil Film Festival in Tehran, Isfahan and Shiraz. We are bringing the famous Brazilian filmmakers and directors for one week. In three cities, Brazil movies will be screening. Here in Iran, we are working together with Art and Experience Institution and they are helping us to put this in place. So this is one important cultural project. For next year, probably in February, we’d like to bring here very well-known Brazil guitar player Yamandu. He is very famous musician. We also like to have some Brazilian painters coming. We are putting together some art galleries here and in Brazil to talk about it and to bring some Brazilian painters and also some street artists. Here in Iran and specifically in Tehran, you have beautiful paintings in the streets and in Brazil too. We have very good street artists. so I’d like to present these ideas to the mayor of Tehran and maybe we can have cooperation and for some days, Brazilian street artists can come here together with Iranian artists to paint some places in Tehran and to leave their art as a gift to Tehran city.
Conservative politicians in the US believe that Mr. Trump no longer would accept JCPOA as it is and he would withdraw from it. Regarding your efforts in bilateral economic relations between two countries, are you concerned that any changes in Trump position toward JCPOA would affect Iran economic relations with Brazil and other countries?
It’s a good question because Brazil always supported JCPOA even before it was approved. Brazil tried to help and our president came to Iran and together with President Ahmadi Nejad and Turkish president signed Tehran Declaration. So we’ve been helping and trying to help Iran since the time many other countries didn’t want to help Iran. But we believe the only way is the diplomatic negotiations and I believe Dr. Zarif and Dr. Rowhani are pursuing the right policy. JCPOA Agreement was very successful. It is tremendous success of Iranian diplomacy and we believe that now other governments including the US should use this as an example to other kinds of agreements and other talks. So they can move forward and have better relations with Iran in other areas as well. So it shows that there is room always for good negotiations and we believe that this should be done. Of course to do this, the other countries have to recognize the importance of Iran as very important regional player and power. It has legitimate interests in the region. They have to be respected and taken into consideration. So when you negotiate with another party, the first thing is to recognize its legitimacy. So this has to be done. I believe the center of the question is that United States has to recognize that Iran is a regional power and an influential and has the its influence and interests and always will have. So I believe they should look for negotiations and conversations and not confrontations. JCPOA is being supported by all other countries, EU, Brazil and Russia and China. So this is a very good example of diplomatic negotiation. Hopefully they will understand this and they will keep their commitment to JCPOA and can move forward to other kinds of negotiations as I said. As the example of JCPOA showed this is the right way of doing it.
As a diplomat, do you feel that JCPOA is in danger?
Frankly speaking I don’t believe so because it’s the United Nations resolution approved by the United Nations Security Council. It is not a bilateral agreement with US. So all other parties, the permanent Security Council members and Iran with the exception of USA involved in the negotiations are very committed. So hopefully the USA government will see that this is the right thing to do and they should be committed to this agreement. Maybe it’s not perfect but as Dr. Zarif said, the good agreement isn’t perfect for one side, if it’s perfect for one side, it means that is not perfect for the other side. The good one is when both sides believe they could have better results because negotiation is all about commitment and compromise. That was a good agreement because both sides compromised and they reached a commitment. What I see from the other parts saying that they will keep their commitment to JCPOA and United Nations Security Council resolution. So I don’t see how this agreement can be spoiled. Of course the USA, with their power and influence, can cause concerns about the implementation and their commitments to the agreement as well. But hopefully they will see as their other allies, especially EU are telling them that this is the right way of taking care of this situation and of the nuclear deal. Now we have to think about moving forward, not moving backwards. We have to move forward to other kinds of agreements in other areas.
Brazil makes great endeavor to fight drug traffickers and terrorist groups. Is there any cooperation between the two countries in this regard?
Not yet we are open to discuss this. Iran has a very good experience in defense and in counter-terrorism and measures against drug trafficking in the borders. So we also could exchange experience on this. There’s been ideas to discuss this in the agenda. Our Ministries of Defense met in Moscow some months ago in an international conference on defense issues. That was one of the topics that they mentioned and they could have a bilateral cooperation because Iran has a very good experience being in the region that is most affected by terrorism and also the problem in the borders with drug trafficking and in Brazil also we have big borders with some countries and unfortunately we have still have problems in dealing with drug trafficking. So I believe it would be very positive to exchange knowledge and information about how to deal with these problems.
I appreciate your thorough answers to our questions.