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Doha and ethanol top Bush-Lula meeting

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Doha and ethanol top Bush-Lula meeting

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For the second time in less than a month, US president George W Bush has been meeting his Brazilian counterpart Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

Although the men come from opposite ends of the political spectrum, good personal relations and mutual interests have warmed ties between the two nations.

Top of the agenda were talks on rescuing struggling world trade negotiations.

“Today I am more optimistic than ever that we are close to finding a deal on the Doha round,” said president Lula da Silva.

Lula is counting on Bush to push forward free-trade talks that would open new markets for Brazil’s farm exports.

“For The United States, we’re willing to reduce our agricultural subsidies in a substantial way. We understand,” said Bush.

“On the other hand, we expect our goods and services – wether they’re agricultural goods, or manifactured goods, and services – to be given an access to markets.”

However, the two leaders whose countries are the world’s largest producers of ethanol are expected to continue disagreeing on one point – Brazil’s call for Washington to lower its tariffs on the biofuel.