BRASILIA, Aug 29 (Reuters) – The European Union needs to help develop the economic potential of the Amazon’s biodiversity, Brazil’s former leader Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and candidate in this year’s presidential race told Members of the European Parliament on Monday.
Lula said that Brazil needs partnerships to develop the Amazon region economically without damaging the rainforest.
“Brazil needs to share research so that everything that is rich in that region can be discovered. Brazil will not close itself in. Brazil intends to build partnerships with many countries,” he said.
Environmental protection has become a key issue in Brazil’s election to be held in October. Lula remains the favorite candidate against President Jair Bolsonaro who had been criticized abroad for a surge in deforestation in the Amazon.
The mission to Brazil, Chile and Argentina by members of the Social Democratic group in the European Parliament was led by Iratxe Garcia, of the Spanish Socialist Workers Party (PSOE).
Lula said that, if elected, he would promote the development of research in the areas of pharmaceuticals and cosmetics that use Amazonian products.
“It will be very clear, if I win the elections, that Brazil needs help from the EU. We need partnership, whether it be investment, scientific and technological exchange or participation in the building of an effectively clean world,” he said.
Lula holds a 12-point lead in the polls over President Jair Bolsonaro.