Economy & Energy
Year XV-No 87
October/December
2011
ISSN 1518-2932

 

No 87 Em Português

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e&e No 87

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The Great Portuguese Navigations and the Conquering of Deep Waters by Brazil

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Nº 87: October/December de 2012

Economy and Energy Organization - e&e  OSCIP 

IISSN 1518-2932
_______________________________

Editorial:

Navegar é preciso. (Sailing is necessary.)

Portugal was just consolidating its position as a nation when it started at the beginning of the XV th century (1493, with the conquest of Ceuta) the epic conquests that transformed this small country of Western Europe into the master of the South Atlantic and Indian Ocean during two centuries. Brazil does not recognize itself as part of this gigantic feat that is imprinted in its origin.

A parallel is made here between what that conquest was and the possible paths that can lead Brazil to a maritime adventure which can put it in the list of developed countries. At the time when the Portuguese navigation started, as it happens today, the central countries were experiencing an economic crisis caused by the 100 Years’ War and by the bubonic plague. This crisis has opened an opportunity window for the Iberian countries regarding navigations.

Das navegações ao mar profundo

Access to the East, from where came the most sophisticated cooking products and clothing, was blocked. The re-conquering of the Iberian Peninsula from the Moors has defined North Africa as a natural expansion frontier and for Portugal, the Atlantic coast of that continent, isolated in the South by the desert. For a country of farmers, it was necessary to navigate. In a century-long adventure the Portuguese made a way from the Tagus to the Indian Ocean.

Portugal, a small and poor country without naval tradition has dominated the South Atlantic and Indian Ocean. An important aspect: each detail of this journey was financed by the resources of the undertaking, in spite of the fact that nowhere Portugal could easily find gold or the already treaded path

Brazil, which had no oil in the middle of last century, has already conquered deep waters in half a century and is on the way of dominating the pre-salt. It is on the brink of self sufficiency and it will become an exporter. It will make a big difference if this conquest will be made with national intelligence, capital and technology.

The rush for exploring resources from the deep ocean is not restricted to oil or territorial waters. The central countries and the main emergent ones are prepared for it and Brazil has reasons and visible rewards to explore this new frontier.

 

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Revised/Revisado:
Friday, 13 September 2013
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