Lula: Poor nations must unite to change world
By Tansa Musa
April 1, 2005
Developing countries must unite to change the balance
of power in the world and face the challenges of
globalisation together, Brazil's president said on
Monday on the first leg of a five-nation African tour.
President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has sought to
expand ties with Africa, both to boost his profile as a
developing world leader and to build on historical
links between Brazil and Africa.
"There's a need to reinforce South-South cooperation in
the face of the challenges of globalisation that
confront particularly developing countries," a joint
statement from Lula and Cameroon's President Paul Biya
Brazil has also been at the forefront of a campaign at
the World Trade Organisation challenging U.S. subsidies
for cotton farmers and Brazilian companies are
increasingly looking to Africa for business
During his stay in Cameroon, Lula called for increased
trade between developing countries to eradicate poverty
and hunger. He also reiterated that poor nations should
work together to end huge subsidies paid by rich
countries to their farmers.
"We have to change the balance of power in the world,"
he said at a banquet in Cameroon on Sunday night. "We
can no more continue to be passive spectators of
decisions that have a direct effect on our destiny."
Lula started his trip in the central African country of
Cameroon on Sunday and landed in oil producer Nigeria
on Monday evening. He is due to visit Ghana, former
Portuguese colony Guinea-Bissau and Senegal
Lula said he supported Africa's drive for greater
representation on the U.N. Security Council while
Cameroon expressed support for Brazil's bid to get a
Brazil and Cameroon signed accords on agriculture,
fisheries, culture, sports and higher education but the
details were not immediately available.
Brazil and Cameroon established relations in 1960
shortly after the central African country's
independence. In 1979, the Brazilian embassy closed for
economic reasons. It reopened two years ago and Lula
said this time it was for good.
And we in the U.S., must work in solidarity with this effort.