Senior U.S. envoys to visit Brazil, El Salvador

08:53, February 09, 2011      

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Two senior U.S. envoys will travel separately to Brazil and El Salvador on Wednesday, two stops on President Barack Obama's planned visit next month.

Assistant Secretary of State for Economic, Energy and Business Affairs Jose Fernandez will lead the U.S. delegation in a bilateral Economic Partnership Dialogue (EPD) to be held in Brasilia on Thursday, the U.S. State Department said on Tuesday.

The EPD was created in 2007 to provide a forum for the United States and Brazil to discuss "how to promote economic advancement that generates prosperity throughout our societies and beyond," the department said in a statement.

During his three-day stay, Fernandez will also visit Sao Paulo, where he will meet with business leaders to discuss investment opportunities in Brazil. He will also participate in a half-day energy-focused infrastructure conference on Friday, organized for U.S. companies by the Brazil-U.S. Business Council and hosted by the American Chamber of Commerce.

"The conference will focus on helping U.S. companies to partner with Brazilian companies to address Brazil's growing energy infrastructure needs, including projects related to the development of oil reserves and nuclear power," the statement said.

In his visit to Brazil on Monday, U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said that the United States and Brazil are " fundamentally aligned" and must act together to achieve a more stable and stronger global system.

Meanwhile, Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Arturo Valenzuela will pay a three-day visit to El Salvador, focusing on ways to deepen and enhance bilateral partnership through the Presidential Policy Directive on Global Development, and discussing "our joint efforts to ensure the safety and security of Salvadoran citizens," the U.S. State Department said.

Valenzuela will be joined by USAID Assistant Administrator for Latin America and the Caribbean Mark Feierstein in his meetings with senior Salvadoran officials to discuss issues of mutual interest, including bilateral cooperation and regional concerns, the department said, adding that he will also meet with political and private sector leaders.

In his Jan. 25 State of the Union address, Obama announced that he would visit Brazil, Chile and El Salvador in March to "forge new alliances for progress in the Americas."

Obama visited Mexico and Trinidad and Tobago early in his presidency, but the upcoming travel will be his first official Central and South American tour.

Source: Xinhua

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