Musk to meet Brazil’s Bolsonaro and discuss environmental issues

SAO PAULO, May 19 (Reuters) – Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and business tycoon Elon Musk are due to meet in Sao Paulo on Friday, Brazilian daily O Globo reported on Thursday.

The two will discuss a potential partnership on rural connectivity and monitoring deforestation, according to O Globo.

The meeting follows a meeting of SpaceX and Tesla (TSLA.O) CEO with Brazilian Communications Minister Fabio Faria in November in Austin, Texas. The two spoke about using SpaceX technology to bring the internet to rural schools and reduce illegal deforestation in the Amazon rainforest.

According to O Globo’s report, Friday’s meeting will take place at an upscale hotel near the town of Sorocaba in the state of Sao Paulo and will bring together several business executives, including Telecom Italia. (TLIT.MI) Chief Executive Pietro Labriola and Chairman of Brazilian lender Banco BTG Pactual (BPAC3.SA)Andre Esteves.

Musk will meet Brazil’s far-right president just days after he said on Twitter that he could no longer support Democrats “and will vote Republican”.

Bolsonaro, who celebrated Twitter announcing his acceptance of Musk’s initial offer for the company, has been trying to lure Tesla to Brazil for years.

In 2020, his son, Congressman Eduardo Bolsonaro, said he met with the former charge d’affaires of the US Embassy in Brasilia, William Popp, to discuss a plan to induce the automaker to build a factory in the country. Shortly after, Bolsonaro said he wanted to visit a Tesla factory during a visit to the United States.

Reporting by Peter Frontini; Editing by Bradley Perrett