Brazilian president leaves for Mercosur summit

13:50, June 29, 2011      

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Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff left here Tuesday for the Paraguayan capital Asuncion to attend the 41st Common Market of the South (Mercosur) Summit.

The summit, which will start Wednesday, is expected to discuss the adoption of Mercosur Strategic Plan of Social Action, and the new rules on the full resumption of duty of the Mercosur Parliament. Also on agenda will be joint projects among member countries on research, education, health and biotechnology, said the Brazilian Foreign Ministry.

"The summit will also represent an opportunity for reflection about the future," the ministry said.

Uruguayan President Jose Mujica, Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa and Colombian Vice President Angelino Garzon will attend the summit hosted by Paraguayan President Fernando Lugo. Meanwhile, Argentina's Cristina Fernandez canceled her planned trip to Paraguay for health reasons.

Mercosur, founded in 1991 by Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, is aimed at promoting free trade in the region.

From January to May 2011, trade between Brazil and the other Mercosur countries reached 17.9 billion U.S. dollars, up 27 percent over the same period last year, the ministry said.

Source: Xinhua
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