Brazil Independence Day, also known as ‘Sete de Setembro’ (September 7), is commemorating, each year, the country’s declaration of independence from Portugal in 1822.
In The Netherlands, the 201st Anniversary of the Independence of Brazil was celebrated with a reception at the official residence of Brazil, in Wassenaar. This year’s hosts were H.E. Ambassador Fernando Simas Magalhães, who had just presented his credentials to HM King Willem-Alexander, the day before, together with his wife, Matilde.
On a sunny and warm autumn afternoon, this occasion gave rise to great and amicable discussions between the many diplomats who were present, from almost every country and every international organization accredited to The Hague, accompanied by the most delicious Brazilian traditional foods and the very popular Caipirinha, Brazil’s national cocktail.
The beautiful garden of the Residence was full of animated international and Dutch people, enjoying a celebration of friendship and international diversity.
Ambassador Simas Magalhães, an experienced and internationally awarded career diplomat, with various previous postings from Washington to Madrid or Quito, gave a warm and insightful speech to the large audience.
‘The long friendship between Brazil and the Netherlands is a testament to the power of international cooperation. Our shared values of democracy, diversity, freedom and innovation have forged a strong bond that continues to bear fruit. Over the years, our bilateral relations have spanned a wide array of fields, from trade and investment to education and research. The exchange of knowledge and experiences has empowered us to tackle global challenges together, from sustainable development and climate change to health and technology. As we celebrate Brazil’s progress and achievements on this special and festive occasion, we also commemorate the enduring partnership with The Netherlands’.
The Ambassador mentioned the numerous people who contributed, throughout the years, to strengthen ties between the two countries. Political leaders, government officials, civil servants, businessmen, scholars, artists, students and professionals from various fields have all contributed to the current bilateral relations.
He noted that ‘a clear example of the importance of the bilateral relations is the number of high-level authorities’ meetings held in the past few months. Prime Minister Mark Rutte met with President Lula in Brasília, in May, and HM Queen Maxima visited Brazil, last June, in her capacity as Special Advocate of the UN Secretary General for Inclusive Finance for Development’.
The two countries collaborate on many levels, from artificial intelligence to sustainability, bio-economy or agriculture.
‘Brazil’s notable standing as agricultural producer aligns with the Netherland’s pre-eminence in agricultural technology, both countries being important food exporters and world suppliers, equally zealous of their agricultural potential’.
The Ambassador also mentioned that Brazil has volunteered to host the 30th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP-30), in the Amazon, in 2025.
‘While assessing global actions to face the challenge of keeping our international commitments, our countries will have to embrace the newest technologies in renewable energies’.
He then added that, ‘in 2022, international trade between Brazil and the Netherlands amounted to 14 billion dollars, while the Dutch investment in our country reached the amount of 126 billion dollars. There is great potential for growth, including in food, agriculture, energy and in the defense sector’.
Meanwhile, ‘Brazil has been and will remain an active participant on the discussions held at the legal multilateral organizations in The Hague, the capital of international justice. We are glad to see one of our most talented jurists, Leonardo Nemer Caldeira Brant, assume the daunting task of succeeding Professor Antonio Augusto Cançado Trindade at the International Court of Justice.
We also look forward to receiving the Secretary-General of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in the coming months in our country. And, at the HCCH, we are proud that it was a Brazilian, Professor Marcelo de Nardi, who presided over the last meeting of the Council on General Affairs and Policy, during which the historic decision to recognize Spanish as an official language of the organization was taken’.
In his speech, the Ambassador pledged his country’s commitment to continue to be an active participant in addressing the important objectives of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), to contribute with other member states to overcome current challenges.
He also thanked the companies that made the event possible: BRASKEM, CUTRALE, EMBRAER and SEARA, and also the people responsible for the evening’s cultural performances: pianist Elizabeth Fadel, who has presented her beautiful renditions of both the Dutch and Brazilian anthems, and then continued with some renowned Brazilian “chorinhos”, in collaboration with the Brazilian Music School of Rotterdam.
It was a memorable night. Viva o Brasi!