International seminar addresses new business opportunities to foster a sustainable rural economy in Brazil


Brasília, 13 May 2019 – International experts, Brazilian government officials and private sector representatives will gather to explore new sustainable business opportunities for the Brazilian rural sector, as well as challenges and strategies to further develop them, at the “International Seminar on Business Opportunities for a Sustainable Rural Economy: The Contribution from Forests and Agriculture”, to be held on 14–15 May, in Brasilia. The event is organised by the Brazilian Institute for Applied Economic Research (Ipea), the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) and the International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth (IPC-IG).

The pressing threats of climate change, biodiversity loss and environmental degradation, combined with rising global demands for food, fuel and fibre, create major economic challenges—as well as opportunities—for the rural sector. Brazil, one of the world’s main agricultural producers and steward of the largest tropical rainforest, has already reduced its carbon emissions further than any other country, through its policies to reduce deforestation in the Amazon.

Within the context of the Paris Agreement on climate change and growing public and private concerns regarding environmental sustainability, three core opportunities (and accompanying challenges) have emerged, related to the further development of a sustainable rural economy worldwide:

  1. Multilateral investments are already being channelled to Brazil and other countries as compensation for climate change mitigation via reductions in deforestation. The seminar will discuss how best to scale up investments into further forest conservation measures.
  2. Major international companies and governments are increasingly committed to eliminating deforestation from their supply chains and sourcing agricultural commodities, wood products and biofuels from areas that meet those requirements. The country could position itself as a sustainable and preferential sourcing region.
  3. As emission trading systems (ETS) mature, as in Europe, California, China and the international aviation sector, and international cooperation on climate change expands under the Paris Agreement, the Seminar seeks to ponder if and how Brazil can engage in these systems. Challenges include enhancing command and control policies and creating appropriate economic incentives, institutions and legislation.

The first day of the Seminar will focus on discussing potential business opportunities that Brazil can develop from emerging carbon markets and their limitations, sustainable supply chains and novel multilateral investments linked to environmental outcomes. During the second day, participants will explore how the country can seize these new business opportunities using and improving its existing toolbox of public policies. Panels will focus on the Brazilian Forest Code and the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) under the Paris Agreement. They will also delve on how rural credit can foster agricultural production, environmental protection and the biophysical feedback of forest protection on agriculture.

Read the full agenda here


Monday, May 13, 2019 - 15:15