Amorim Highlights Need for Strong Defense Industrial Base in South America

Amorim Highlights Need for Strong Defense Industrial Base in South America

By Dialogo
February 21, 2012

In a speech opening the Second National Defense Seminar in Brazil, Defense Minister Celso Amorim identified a process of deconcentration of world power and the creation of “a belt of good will between Brazil and its neighbors in South America.”

Amorim also stressed the need for a strong defense industrial base as part of a deterrence strategy that can guarantee peace in the South Atlantic. According to the minister, the country should extend this belt to Africa, in the spirit of the South Atlantic Peace and Cooperation Zone.

“Despite this, due to the fluidity of international relations, we have to be prepared for a possible external threat. The best way to prevent that is a strong defense that could inflict serious damage on a possible aggressor.” In order to guarantee that plan, aerial, naval, and land resources will be necessary, as foreseen in the National Defense Strategy.

The minister recalled that government officials should use peacetime to prepare for possible conflict. “This preparation includes the ability to prevent possible adversities. No sovereign country delegates its defense to third parties,” the minister emphasized.

Fighter Purchase

With regard to the acquisition of fighter planes, Amorim affirmed that the purchase process may move forward in the first half of the year, but he stressed that the decision belongs to President Dilma Rousseff. “It’s a necessary purchase, but it’s not cheap.” The finalists under consideration are Boeing’s A-18E/F Super Hornet, Dassault’s Rafale, and the Swedish firm SAAB’s Gripen NG.