Brazilian-Argentine Relations in the 1980s: from Wary Rivalry toward Friendly Competition
DEPARTMENT OF STATE WASHINGTON DC OFFICE OF EXTERNAL RESEARCH
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Events since 1979 have steadily softened the long-dominant tone of rivalry in Brazilian-Argentine relations and have set up a mutual confidence level and institutional mechanisms sufficient to support greater degrees of cooperation. The mutual understanding, formally established during a landmark May 1980 visit of Brazils President Joao Figueiredo to President Jorge Videla in Buenos Aires, is attributable above all to a pragmatic perception in both capitals that accumulated and unaddressed small grievances could mount into major and unnecessary points of attrition sapping more important efforts. The most likely state of the relationship in 1985-86 is friendly competition with mild signs of economic interdependence 75 probability. Major formative factors beyond 1986 include degree of mutual economic benefits, status of foreign debt terms, economic health, viability of countertrade, inward vs. outward orientations, internal stability, regime compatibility, comparative advantage, political status of neighbors, and status of nuclear development programs. Most likely in 1987-89 is continuation of an essentially cooperative tone with subdued competition 65 probability, unless poor management of the nuclear issue causes an upsurge in tensions 25 probability. American policy will be affected chiefly by somewhat greater autonomy of the partners. This research covers political, economic and security relations with conclusions and implications for U.S. foreign policy.
- Government and Political Science