United Arab Emirates Are Interested In Participating In The Tamandaré Corvette Project
(Source: Brazil Ministry of Defence; issued May 11, 2017)
(Issued in Portuguese; unofficial translation by Dedfense-Aerospace.com)
Brazil’s Defense Minister Raul Jungmann (L) and his opposite number from the United Arab Emirates (R) Mohamed Albawardi Alfalasi discussed wide-ranging cooperation in armament programs. (Brazil MoD photo)
BRASÍLIA --- The United Arab Emirates are interested in the development project of the Tamandaré class corvette for the Brazilian Navy, it emerged during a meeting of the minister Raul Jungmann with his counterpart from the United Arab Emirates, Mohamed Albawardi Alfalasi. "We are interested in participating in projects in all areas, whether military or commercial," said Minister Mohamed.

Minister Jungmann was in favor of the partnership. "We welcome cooperation in this project," and said that the Arab delegation will go tomorrow (May 12) to visit the Emgepron factory, a naval company linked to the Navy Command.

Jungmann also told his UAE guest that the partnership could be broadened, including other sectors of the economy, including offsets. The Brazilian minister recalled during the meeting of the negotiations of the government of the Emirates with the Embraer company on the KC-390 transport aircraft.

Present at the meeting, Brazilian Navy commander Admiral Eduardo Leal Ferreira told the delegation the configuration of the Tamandaré corvette and its commercial and military advantages. "The project has a low-cost and medium-intensity strategic concept. I believe it meets the needs of both countries," added the admiral.

The Arab Emirates, through the company Calidus, develops together with the Brazilian Novaer, the B250 aircraft, which is in the certification phase.

During the meeting, the Ministry of Defense’s Secretary for Defense Production, Flávio Basilio, highlighted the financial instruments available to strengthen the defense industrial base, such as the Bank for Economic and Social Development (BNDES). "We can use these mechanisms to support the industrial base, with the possibility of diversifying portfolios," argued the MD secretary. He further recalled that the United Arab Emirates have an important sovereign fund, considered the largest in the world.

Jungmann suggested that more companies from the United Arab Emirates participate in the next edition of LAAD - a defense and security fair scheduled to take place in 2019. He recalled that in February of this year 18 Brazilian companies participated in the IDEX, the international defense fair that took place in Abu Dhabi.

The government of the United Arab Emirates also showed interest in the Integrated Border Monitoring System (SISFRON). In this sense, Jungmann said that Brazil has the challenge of protecting the third-largest border in the world. "This is a priority issue and of great concern to us." Jungmann invited the delegation to visit the pilot project implemented in Mato Grosso do Sul, which "uses the state of the art in terms of technology."

At the meeting, it was decided to create a bilateral committee to deal with defense issues. Jungmann appointed the Deputy Chief of Strategic Affairs, General Fernando Goulart, to head the committee.

The United Arab Emirates is one of the ten largest buyers of defense products in the world. At the National Congress, the agreement for the protection of military information is being processed, which could further increase cooperation between the two countries.

This week the delegation of the United Arab Emirates visited, in addition to Novaer, the industrial facilities of Avibras and Embraer.

The meeting was also attended by the general secretary of the MD, General Joaquim Silva e Luna; Brigadier Alvani Adão da Silva, temporarily replacing the head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (ECMFA); The ambassador of the United Arab Emirates, Hafsa Al Ulama, as well as other civil and military authorities.

Memorandum of Understanding

At the end of the meeting, the director of the Brazilian Association of Defense and Security Materials Industries (ABIMDE), Carlos Frederico Aguiar, and the director of the UAE’s Tawazun company, Saif Alhajiri, signed a memorandum of understanding on industrial defense cooperation. Tawazun Holding spans more than 14 defense companies and manufactures items such as weapons, tanks and other military vehicles.

In his comments, the director of Tawazun said that his country's defense industry is recent, but it has products with international reach. "We want to share knowledge with Brazilian companies," said Saif.

In March of this year, Jungmann received the United Arab Emirates' Foreign Minister, Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan. On occasion, Sheikh Abdullah said his country would like to open an office in Brazil to deal with defense matters.

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