BRASILIA, Brazil (AP) -- Egypt wants more Brazilian investments and increased trade with Latin America's biggest nation, Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi said Wednesday.
"We want to increase trade between our two countries and want more Brazilian investors to invest in Egypt," Morsi said in a statement released after he met with Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff.
Morsi and Rousseff also called for an end to the fighting in Syria and the creation of a Palestinian state as a way to achieve peace in the Middle East.
"We must do everything possible to stop the shedding of blood in Syria," Morsi said. "We believe that the solution (for peace in Syria) must begin with the creation of a regional group with international support namely from the permanent members of the United Nations security council," Morsi said.
Egypt is Brazil's biggest trading partner in Africa. Bilateral trade in 2012 came to $2.96 billion, seven times more than the $419 million registered in 2002.
Morsi, the first Egyptian president to visit Brazil, arrived Tuesday night.
He said Egypt wants Brazil's help to eradicate poverty.
"We want to get to know Brazil's experience in poverty reduction, social development and democratization," Morsi said.
"Brazil could help Egypt achieve social justice," Morsi said. "Egypt has a lot of potential that Brazil can help us exploit."
He said Egypt is interested in Brazil's experience in developing biofuels such a sugarcane-based ethanol.
On Thursday Morsi is scheduled to visit Sao Paulo where he will meet with Brazilian businessmen, many of whom have said they are interested in investing in transportation and energy projects in Egypt.