Brazil not our 'El Dorado'
Madam – Marc Coleman is under the illusion that Brazil could become Ireland's 'El Dorado' (Sunday Independent, March 10, 2013). He states that '47 per cent of Brazil's 100 million population is middle class'. The census of 2010 gives Brazil's population as 190.8 million, not 100 million.
It is absurd to think that this growing middle-class 'are crying out for what we (Ireland) want to export'. Brazil's growing middle-class are being catered for by multinationals who provide automobiles, consumer goods and hygiene products etc. Ireland is not a major manufacturing country and has little to offer Brazil and the Irish Embassy in Brasilia promotes cultural and educational events as Brazilians are much taken with Ireland's musical and literary heritage.
However, the most ridiculous suggestion of Mr Coleman's was a 'Dublin-Brazil-Lisbon axis of diplomatic and economic relations'. This betrays almost total ignorance of Brazil's distinguished Ministry of Foreign Relations founded in 1822 and called 'Itamaraty' after the building in Rio which housed the ministry until its transfer to Brasilia.