Industry

A British oil worker has been shot dead by two men in the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro, a Scottish newspaper reported on Saturday.

Peter Campsie, 48, from Montrose in Scotland, was killed in an attempted carjacking as he was returning home after a business meeting, the Aberdeen-based Press and Journal newspaper reported.

Mr Campsie, who worked as operations manager for Diamond Offshore Drilling International and hails, was shot twice as he attempted to leave his car, according to the newspaper.

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The Brazilian government has announced that the application process for work visas to Brazil has been simplified significantly in response to demands from industry, calling for more qualified overseas workers to fill gaps in the Brazilian labour market.

Brazilian visa. Photo by Ben Tavener.

The process for applying for a work visa to Brazil should now be quicker and require fewer documents. Photo by Ben Tavener.

The government says it hopes that regular work visas, which currently take around three months to be issued, will take just 30 days.

The new rules, published under Normative Resolution (RN) 104, aim to speed up the process by requiring fewer documents and allowing documents to be sent online.

Industry and foreign workers have long complained that the process for granting a work visa was too long and overly complicated, requiring some fifteen documents and sometimes a number of visits to the Consulate; just three documents will now be required.

The government admits the new rules were a direct response to demands by industry, which struggles with Brazil’s lack of specifically qualified workers – particularly engineers, oil and gas experts, and systems analysts – to help ready the country host the World Cup and the Olympics.

Two other recent changes in work visas should also prove interesting to companies in Brazil and foreign students:

Resolution RN 100 provides a work visa of up to ninety days to foreign nationals providing technical assistance or technological know-how to Brazilian companies. Applicants go straight to their local Consulate, without the need for a permit from the Ministry for Labour and Employment (MTE).

Resolution RN 103 allows students with a Master’s degree or above to work up to ninety days in Brazil during their vacations. This work still requires MTE authorisation, but is expected to be popular with temporary jobs appearing for highly-qualified professionals for the World Cup and the Olympics.

Despite past concerns that Brazil should not encourage foreigners to work in Brazil but instead focus on improving the quality of homegrown professionals, Brazil’s Minister for Labour and Employment, Manoel Dias, says that boosting worker numbers from abroad would not take jobs from Brazilians.

Read the full article on The Rio Times website.

The 2012 growth forecast for the Brazilian economy has been cut for the third consecutive week by market analysts, falling dramatically from the previous estimate of 1.5% to just 1.27%.

Brazil Finance Minister Guido Mantega says 2013 will see growth of 4% or more. Photo by Antonia Cruz/ABr.

Brazil Finance Minister Guido Mantega says 2013 will see growth of 4% or more. Photo by Antonia Cruz/ABr.

The news comes after disappointing figures for the third quarter of 2012, released a week earlier by the IBGE, Brazil’s national office of statistics.

With only 0.6% growth on the previous quarter, the figure was just half the 1.2% target predicted by market analysts for the quarter.

Finance Minister Guido Mantega said that while he was “surprised” with the weak growth, he remained adamant the economy could grow at least four percent in 2013, as he has previously stated.

Mantega recognized that 2012 had been a “very difficult” year, but said it was ending with a return to growth and upward trend for the economy. He also said that cuts in the SELIC, Brazil’s benchmark interest rate, would also reap future benefits:

“We are living a silent revolution in the economy. The return to growth has already started,” O Globo newspaper quoted the finance minister as saying.

However, he laid the blame for the downturn in Brazil squarely on the international economy, saying the relapse in the economic crisis has damaged investments, which he said would come back.

The comments follow similar criticism made by the finance minister in recent months on the way overseas economies have been dealing with the crisis, particularly those implementing a program of quantitative easing, like the U.S., a process which he vehemently opposes.

Yet others questioned the extent to which Brazil can truly blame other nations for its financial troubles. Most commentators have been baffled by what they see as Mantega’s overly-positive outlook for the economy in 2013, and the FT described the downturn as having “shaken Brazil from its dream”.

There was, however, some good news: the agriculture-livestock sector grew 2.5% in October. Industrial production also picked up, growing 0.9% on September and 2.3% year-on-year. However, the services industry flatlined in October.

Read the full article on The Rio Times site.