Julia Dias (AFN)
The Ambassador of Australia to Brazil, Timothy Kane, and the Consul General of Australia, Greg Wallis, visited Fiocruz on May 8 to learn more about the work of the Institution. They met with Vice President of Education, Information and Communication, Cristiani Machado, representing the Presidency of the Foundation, with the Assistant for Institutional Relations, Valber Frutuoso, and representatives of the Center for International Relations in Health (Cris- Fiocruz).
“Despite the physical distance between the two countries, their similarities are countless, for example, geography, climate conditions, environmental wealth and sociocultural diversity,” said the Embassy’s Research and Policy Officer, Caio Jacon.
At the meeting, they addressed topics of common interest that may result in more cooperation, especially in the field of tropical medicine. Vector control, vaccine production, snakebites, and support for girls and women in science were some of the topics discussed.
An example of existing collaboration between Brazil and Australia is the World Mosquito Program, responsible for the Wolbachia method for fighting Aedes aegypti. Initiated by Australian researchers at Monash University, the project arrived in Brazil in 2012, where it is conducted by Fiocruz researchers.
Australia also has a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa). The cooperation is done through the government agency Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO).
“We are eager to work to increase trade and investment flows between the two nations and we believe both countries have an opportunity to develop a successful research collaboration,” Jacon said.
Australia and Fiocruz discuss genetics and women in science
After this first visit, representatives of the Australian Embassy to Brazil were at Fiocruz at May 23, along with the country's Commissioner for Sexual Discrimination, Kate Jankins, and the geneticist at La Trobe University, Jenny Graves, to discuss with researchers studies of both countries in the area of genetics and how to encourage girls and women to enter the field of science. The goal of the meetings was to strengthen ties between the two countries and find areas for future partnerships.