Brazil's investment message brings hope mixed with skepticism
By Daniel Bases
NEW YORK, June 29 (Reuters) - Nearly two years ago Brazil sought U.S. investors' help to fund its seaports, railroads, highways and airports.
In the end, though, the effort to lure 210 billion reais in private investment managed to attract just 20 percent of the targeted funds.
Now, doing her best to absorb the lessons of the earlier failed infrastructure plan, President Dilma Rousseff is making a new push to lure 198.4 billion reais ($64 billion) in infrastructure funds.
She and other Brazilian officials visited New York on Monday, touting an open and transparent bidding process for contracts to operate roads, railways, airports and harbor terminals.
She closed out an infrastructure-themed conference with a speech emphasizing the strong ties between her nation and the United States and how better investment and trade can benefit both countries.
"There is a clear and strong demand for infrastructure development projects in Brazil. All of these figures I have just referred to convey a loud and clear message for those of us in government circles," Rousseff said, speaking in Portuguese to a standing room only crowd of international investors at the New York Palace Hotel.
"The message is clear: we must change the potential demand out there into better tangible infrastructure and viable investment projects to be undertaken by private sector capital."
Rousseff later in the day took her economic charm offensive to Washington, where she began two days of meetings with President Barack Obama. Continuación...