Latvian PM talks business on two-week visit to Brazil, United States

Latvian Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis is on a two-week visit to the Americas, with tours of Brazil and the United States on his agenda to promote trade and development.

Dombrovskis headed to Brazil on July 8 and will be there until July 12, according to spokeswoman Zanda Šadre. With him are representatives of seven Latvian companies.

The prime minister’s first stop was July 9 in Rio de Janeiro, where he was scheduled to tour the city’s port and meet with Latvians in Brazil who are involved in business. On July 10, Dombrovskis is to meet with the mayor of Nova Odessa, visit the Fazenda Velha Latvian church and meet with representatives of Brazilian Latvian organizations.

Dombrovskis heads to São Paulo on July 11, where he will meet with Mayor Geraldo Jose Rodrigues Alckmin Fliho and, together with the Latvian trade delegation, attend the second Latvian-Brazilian business forum hosted by Commerce and Industry Federation of São Paulo.

During the visit to São Paulo, the Latvian Chamber of Commerce and Industry will sign a memorandum of understanding with the Commerce and Industry Federation, while the Freeport of Rīga will sign a memorandum with officials of the Santo port.

Dombrovskis also is to be interviewed by the daily newspaper Folha de São Paulo.

On July 12, the prime minister is to travel to the capital city of Brasilia where he will meet with Brazilian Vice President Michel Temer and other government officials. He also is to be interviewed by the newspaper Correio Braziliense and will visit the Swedish Embassy to meet with Brazilian business people.

After his arrival in Washington, D.C., Dombrovskis is scheduled July 13 to meet with U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. The balance of the day will be spent visiting with representatives of several American companies and, in the evening, with leaders of the American Latvian Association.

On July 14, the prime minister is to be interviewed by The Washington Post and Newsweek; present his book How Latvia Came Through Financial Crisis to the World Bank; meet with Rep. Gregory Meeks and Sen. James Inhofe; and, together with economist and co-author Anders Aslund, present his book to the Peterson Institute for International Economics.

The prime minister will then switch coasts and on July 15 visit the San Francisco area and Silicon Valley. On his agenda are a visit to the Plug and Play Tech Center; opening of an office of the Latvian Business Association; meeting with officials from Google, Cisco and Juniper Networks; and visiting Stanford University. He also is expected to meet in the evening with San Francisco-area Latvia business people.

On July 16, Dombrovskis is scheduled to meet with the San Francisco-area Latvian community and open a new Latvian honorary consulate.

From July 17-18, the prime minister will be in Los Angeles, where he will meet with the local Latvian community; open an honorary consulate; meet with city and Orange County officials; meet with the Baltic-American Freedom League; attend a business seminar hosted by Allergan; address the World Affairs Council; and pay a visit to Warner Brothers Studios.

Dombrovskis then travels to Austin, Texas, where on July 19 he will meet with President William Powers of the University of Texas at Austin; visit with Gov. Rick Perry; and attend a business seminar.

From July 20-22, Dombrovskis and the trade delegation will be in New York. On the schedule are interviews with Bloomberg News and the Thompson Reuters agencies; meetings with IBM computer company officials and banking sector officials; and visits to the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ. He also will talk about his book to the Council on Foreign Relations.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

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