Southeast Marine Forum established in Brazil

By Fernanda Velloso
Thu May 10 2018, 08:18 AM

New partnership designed to strengthen trade in the country’s southeast region

A new partnership has formed in Brazil between four states, the government and various private sector companies to ensure the continued growth of leisure boat production in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Minas Gerais and Espírito Santos.

The Southeast Marine Forum (Fórum Náutico Sudeste) was formed at a meeting during the 2018 Rio Boat Show in Marina da Glória. The forum will provide a set of key actions, in partnership with the private sector, to improve the marine market and raise the region’s traditions, stimulating the production of boats and creating more income and employment in the field.

After visiting the Rio show, the group decided that the marine industry is of great importance to the regional economy, as it creates, on average, an estimated eight direct jobs for each boat built.

During the meeting, concerns were raised about the need to highlight the country’s 40,000km of inland waterways, which are largely unexplored. At the moment, local tourism is mostly geared towards coastal activities.

The Fórum Náutico Sudeste will follow in the footsteps of the Fórum Náutico Paulista (São Paulo). Among the demands presented by the forum are changes in regulatory frameworks to improve the construction of public marinas and ramps, and a reduction and/or equal distribution of taxes in the four states.

According to Marco Antonio Castelo Branco, president of Fórum Náutico Sudeste, government policy is based on providing jobs and increasing incomes, and the boat industry is in line with this strategy. “We believe that the Sudeste region of Brazil is preparing to strengthen the supply chain,” says Branco. “Our marine industry is the most traditional of Brazil and we will need qualified workers to fill these positions.”

Eduardo Colunna, the newly re-elected president of Brazilian boatbuilders' association ACOBAR, says the Fórum Náutico Sudeste is a pilot scheme that will lead by example for other forums yet to be created.