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U.S.-Brazil Aviation Partnership Memorandum Signed

On Monday, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her Brazilian counterpart Antonio Patriota signed the U.S.-Brazil Aviation Partnership Memorandum, which builds on their Open Skies Agreement and will promote more and safer air travel between the two countries. Clinton called it a "win-win" deal. "It will promote not only our aviation industries and business travel, but also more tourism and exchanges," Clinton said while delivering opening remarks at the "Brazil-U.S.: Partnership for the 21st Century" conference, held at U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Washington, DC.

Clinton announced that the United States will be opening two new consulates in Brazil - one in Belo Horizonte and one in Porto Alegre - "in order to make it easier to get visas, easier to travel, knock down some of the barriers that have been put up, and continue to promote people-to-people contact."

She urged the participants of the conference to identify concrete ways for collaboration in business and education, energy, and any other critical field. "And the foreign minister (Patriota) and I will do the same here in Washington and then when I travel to Brazil next week, where we will convene the next meeting of the U.S.-Brazil Global Partnership Dialogue," Clinton said.

The conference takes place during Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff's visit to the United States and reflects the depth and positive focus of the bilateral relationship. The Partnership for the 21st Century conference is a joint effort to continue to grow commercial, economic, educational, and innovation ties between the two countries. The event includes panel discussions on business and trade advancements and on education and innovation cooperation, including President Obama's 100,000 Strong in the Americas goal and President Rousseff's Science without Borders initiatives.

Several other documents and agreements were signed on the margins of the conference. These included a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on State and Local Cooperation, an MOU on Trilateral Cooperation on Food Security in Haiti and Honduras, an Action Plan on Science and Technology Cooperation, an MOU between Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Brazil's Federal Agency for Support and Evaluation of Graduate Education (CAPES), and a Fulbright-Science without Borders Scholar and Distinguished Chair agreement between CAPES and the U.S.-Brazil Fulbright Commission to expand research exchanges. Other inter-agency agreements related to education, culture, environment, sustainable development, and trade were also signed.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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