China and Brazil boost links

Countries sign several trade and investment agreements on the sidelines of BRIC summit in Brazilian

Chinese President Hu Jintao and Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva oversaw the signing of deals to increase trade and energy co-operation between the two increasingly powerful economies. The deals include the building of a steel plant in Brazil by China which will be "China's biggest investment in Brazil". According to reports in Brazilian media, China's Wuhan Iron and Steel is expected to build a plant in the port of Acu in Rio de Janeiro in collaboration with Brazilian firm, LLX.

Lula said China also wants to bid for constructing a high-speed railway line between Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo. The two countries also reached an agreement to increase export of Brazilian beef and tobacco to China and explore ways to cooperate on satellite launches. Brazil's state oil giant Petrobas and China's Sinopec signed a wide-ranging agreement for exploration and production of oil.

The BRIC summit involved the four rapidly developing countries -- Brazil, Russia, India and China -- which together represent over 40 per cent of the world's population. It was moved forward a day to Thursday evening because Jintao had to cancel his scheduled visits to Chile and Venezuela and cut short his visit due to a major earthquake that killed hundreds of people in China.