Thomas R. Hardy
(703) 875-4357


PORTO ALEGRE, BRAZIL (September 15, 2009) – Today, USTDA awarded a grant to the Rio Grande do Sul State Government in Brazil to fund a modernization plan that will guide the expansion of aviation transportation services throughout the State. The plan's implementation presents numerous opportunities for the export of U.S. goods and services.

The $630,000 grant was conferred during a signing ceremony held at the office of the Governor of Rio Grande do Sul. USTDA Country Manager Gabrielle Mandel and Governor Yeda Crusius and Secretary Daniel de Moraes Andrade of the State Secretariat for Infrastructure and Logistics (SEINFRA) signed the grant agreement on behalf of the U.S. and State of Rio Grande do Sul governments, respectively. Rodrigo Mota, USTDA Brazil Country Representative, signed as a witness to the grant agreement.

"In today's global economy, aviation infrastructure is a critical foundation for economic growth," said Mandel. "USTDA is pleased to support this project, which will strengthen important regional aviation links in the State of Rio Grande do Sul."

In 2003, SEINFRA established an airport development program for the modernization of air transport in the state, focusing on increased regional connectivity, particularly for emergency response, as well as promoting tourism and trade. To meet these objectives, the USTDA grant will fund a technical assistance consultancy that will help create a roadmap for the development of the state's regional airport system through 2019. The modernization plan will address investments including runway pavement, air navigation equipment, emergency response and security equipment.

Brazil was named USTDA's 2008 Country of the Year as a result of the success of the agency's program in advancing mutual economic benefits and U.S. policy priorities. Brazil is one of USTDA's largest regional partners and the agency has invested in 92 priority projects there since 1981. Over the years, these investments have facilitated $549.9 million in U.S. exports.

The opportunity to conduct the technical assistance will be competed on the Federal Business Opportunities (FBO) website. A link to the FBO announcement will be posted on USTDA's website at Interested U.S. firms should submit proposals according to the instructions contained in the FBO announcement. SEINFRA will select the U.S. firm that will provide the USTDA-funded assistance.

The U.S. Trade and Development Agency advances economic development and U.S. commercial interests in developing and middle-income countries. The agency funds various forms of technical assistance, early investment analysis, training, reverse trade missions and business workshops that support the development of a modern infrastructure and a fair, open trading environment. USTDA's strategic use of foreign assistance funds to support sound investment policy and decision-making in host countries creates an enabling environment for trade, investment and sustainable economic development. In carrying out its mission, USTDA gives emphasis to economic sectors that may benefit from U.S. exports of goods and services.


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