Ambassador: Brazil, Azerbaijan can strengthen relations in sports and culture

Azerbaijan, Baku, April 20 /Trend, E.Mehdiyev/

Sports and culture are areas close to our hearts and minds, newly appointed Brazilian Ambassador to Azerbaijan, Sergio Arruda said in an interview with Trend.

"Brazil is looking forward to receiving Azerbaijani Minister of Youth and Sports Azad Rahimov in the next few weeks to sign a bilateral cooperation agreement. Besides these immediate, very promising developments, there are interesting mid and long term possibilities," the ambassador added.

He went on recalling that FIFA's 2014 World Cup will be held in 12 Brazilian cities and Rio has been chosen to host the 2016 Olympic Games.

"We understand that Azerbaijan is working very seriously to become more and more visible in the international arena as a most convenient venue for megasporting events. I feel privileged to be in Baku next September and attend some of the matches under FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup," the diplomat stated.

Sergio Arruda stressed that Brazil follows very closely all the initial steps of Azerbaijan's bidding to try and host the 2020 Olympic Games.

"These efforts are visible to any visitor in Baku, as no experient traveller can possibly miss the huge infrastructural investments under way. The very good conditions of Azerbaijan's sport facilities and the success of your country's previous undertakings in this area are very positive indicators," the ambassador said.

He pointed out that Brazil is learning very much from London that will be hosting the Olympic Games this year, and the two countries have in place smooth arrangements to share experience.

"In case Baku is selected to host the 2020 Games, this would be one of the lines where Brazil and Azerbaijan could also share experiences," the ambassador suggested.

Regarding the bilateral cultural relations, Arruda stated that he looks forward to following up a couple of interesting and very sucessful initiatives taken by his predecessor and first Brazilian ambassador to Azerbaijan, having to do with two talented Brazilian teachers, who worked with the Azerbaijani Philharmonic and managed, through this prestigious partnership, to introduce here Brazilian rhythms and dances.

"We think there is quite a good, but yet untapped, potential for further development of our cultural relations. An example that comes immediately to my mind is music: Azerbaijan is a very musical, extremely creative country. The fusion of Azerbaijan's traditional rhythms with jazz is remarkable. Hopefully, the 50-year old, internationally acclaimed Brazilian bossa nova, or the contagious samba, will be next in line. For, indeed we could have much more in terms of exchanges, so as to expose local audiences to Brazilian artists invited to come to Azerbaijan and perform under the sponsorship of the embassy and/or other interested parties," he stressed.

But the ambassador looks forward very much to having Azerbaijani artists performing in Brazil as well, and anticipates a very productive agenda in this connection for his colleague, who will be arriving early next May in Brasília to install the recently created Azerbaijani embassy there.

"Music is certainly a form of art extremely appealing to us and Brazilians will be most open to this expression of Azerbaijan's culture. I think culture is a double lane broad avenue which has enough place to allow both countries to interact," Arruda concluded.

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