BRASILIA – Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro met on Wednesday with a Chinese envoy and assured him that he wants to “expand bilateral relations” regardless of ideological differences between the two countries, an official source said.
Bolsonaro, an outspoken rightist who took office Tuesday, received Ji Bingxuan, a special envoy of Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Bolsonaro expressed his “intention to expand bilateral relations with China, regardless of the change in the Brazilian political context and the world economic scenario,” according to the source in Brazil’s government.
China and the United States – in that order – are Brazil’s main trading partners. Bolsonaro has given indications that he seeks a closer alignment with the US, but not at the expense of relations with Beijing.
The Brazilian leader spoke with Ji about the “importance of greater diversification of the (bilateral) commercial model” and the “expansion of the areas of cooperation between the two countries,” the source said.
Among other sectors, cooperation could also be expanded into some areas of science and technology, agriculture and industrial development.
Bolsonaro met with Ji after talks with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who represented President Donald Trump at Tuesday’s inauguration.