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Brazil - Africa: Relations for a Multipolar Future

The new multipolar order, or what is understood as the beginning of multipolarity, has as one of its characteristics new arrangements in agreements and international relations, such as the intensification of regional blocs, partnerships within blocs, the creation of new models of cooperation, and closer ties between states and organizations. We can affirm that this new structuring of the global system has become more evident with the end of the Cold War and more pronounced in the post-2008 financial crisis, which demonstrated the fall of the Soviet Union in the bipolar order and the growing fragility of the United States economy, already at the end of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st century.

Within this context, new international actors have begun to seek and claim greater relevance within the international system and the configurations of power balance, with emphasis on the initially BRIC group (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) which later had the entry of South Africa, becoming BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa). Without a doubt, the countries that make up the group are extremely relevant to global agendas, although there is a disparity in some indicators among them; there is an agenda to achieve greater impact and weight in negotiations within the international community.

In this youthful 21st century, Brazil stands out for its pragmatic foreign policy, resumed after a strong alignment with the United States during the military dictatorship era (1964-1984), opting for the search for new alliances and strategic partnerships with the so-called Global South, inaugurating the so-called SOUTH-SOUTH diplomacy.

Taking advantage of its excellent international image, there is a well-founded pursuit of African countries, since they have a history of rejection of the United States, as well as of many former European colonizers. In this field, rich partnerships are established initially focused on investment and trade, beginning with historically more aligned countries such as Angola, Mozambique, and Cape Verde, and expanded to international policies also with the African Union.

Through the Brazilian Cooperation Agency (ABC), we have improved technical and economic relations with Algeria, helping to modernize techniques in jewelry production; Benin, Botswana, and Senegal, to improve agroecology and cooperatives among small producers; and with Togo, improving techniques for cultivation and processing of cassava. Still within the scope of ABC, there are currently a total of 32 agreements, working on around 70 projects in African countries.

"We have a network of 32 basic cooperation agreements with African countries and with the African Union itself, which support more than 70 ongoing projects, especially in the areas of health, agriculture, food and nutritional security, livestock, fisheries, education, and professional training," emphasized Maria Laura.

Following the historical proximity with the African continent, Brazil supported the entry of Egypt and Ethiopia into the now-called BRICS+ (which also includes Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Iran), as well as advocated for the African Union as a full member of the G20 (Group of 20 largest economies in the world) who will meet in November in Rio de Janeiro.

In February, we celebrated 100 years of relations between Brazil and Egypt, as well as the 37th Summit of the African Union, which had President Lula as a speaker at its opening, highlighting the ethnic and cultural relations that Brazil has with Africa, as well as encouraging the expansion of bilateral programs in agriculture, education, artificial intelligence, and health. The resumption of relations, both with the African Union and with countries on a bilateral basis, is a major strategy to diversify the trade balance for all, as well as to strengthen Brazilian leadership in the international scenario, even more so in an arena seldom discussed and always relativized by Western democracies.

The African continent is fundamental to Brazilian foreign policy, whether in terms of trade or international policies, following the pillar of pragmatism and seeking to increasingly enhance its relevance to the global system and its role in this new multipolar order.

Since the beginning of the century, some African countries have been able to establish excellent relations with Chinese foreign policy, especially in direct foreign investments ranging from infrastructure to educational enhancement programs. In this context, Brazil emerges as a weighty actor, considering the history of excellent partnerships, for practically all countries on the continent.

Africa today has around 1.3 billion people and a diversified and booming economy, with a heterogeneous cultural and investment capacity. Although there is disparity among countries such as Egypt, Nigeria, South Africa, and the major African center, Brazil's relations are of extreme importance to all involved. On one hand, there is the pursuit of greater relevance and impact in global decisions, and on the other, the evolution of a continent eager for international integration and investments. Brazil-Africa relations are of utmost importance for the development of a truly multipolar global order, since it is not possible to defend multipolarity and the establishment of a more equitable division of the international system without contemplating the cradle of humanity, the African continent.

By Bernardo Monteiro, he holds a degree in International Relations from UNESA and is also a postgraduate (MBA) in International Relations from FGV-RJ; author of the book: "Towards Democratic Stability," he has a background as an international political analyst; he works as a writer, political analyst, researcher, and scientific disseminator on: Brazilian politics, history of democracy, Western democracies, and sociopolitics.

He was an associated researcher at the Laboratory of Simulations and Scenarios of the Naval War School of the Brazilian Navy (LSC-EGN/MB); he was a guest lecturer for the course Analysis of International Politics for the undergraduate program in Defense and International Strategic Management at UFRJ; he was a professor of Foreign Policy Analysis for the I Congress of International Relations (I CONRI); he has been a speaker and professor on Brazilian politics, political analysis, geopolitics, democracies, and prospective scenarios.

Bibliographical References:

Dados de Comércio Exterior em acesso livre pelo Comex Stat, MDIC


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