(VELINO) Roma, 3 Mar - The Italian-Brazilian ParliamentaryFriendship Group held its first meeting since the opening ofBrazil's new legislature. The group met at the Italian Embassyin Brasilia. The meeting, which was chaired by ItalianAmbassador, Raffaele Trombetta, and President of the Brazil-Italy Parliamentary Group, Ricardo Barros MP, focused onstrengthening the economic, political and cultural ties betweenthe two countries. The Group's primary objective is to furtherintensify bilateral political dialogue through the promotion ofvisits and meetings at government and local administrationlevel. Its second priority is to share experiences gained inthe law-making processes of the two parliaments. Brazil andItaly are very interested in developing legislation to supportsmall and medium-sized enterprises, a sector characterised by ahigh level of complementarity between the production systems ofthe two countries, giving ample margin for mutuallyadvantageous cooperation. The Group also evaluated thepossibility of focusing special attention on Milan Expo 2015,where Brazil has one of the largest pavilions. Another proposalconcerned the possibility of organising ad hoc presentations onthe event and on the opportunities that Expo offers for localcompanies. Attention was also focused on the progress made bythe bill to ratify bilateral agreements and on singling outpotential fields of cooperation between the Group and theEuropean Union. Ambassador Trombetta also illustrated the "Yearof Italy in Latin America" initiative, especially highlightingthe events planned in Brazil. The Brazilian MPs welcomed theproposal to work with the Embassy to develop and promote theinitiatives, which are considered an excellent way of furtherstrengthening the already strong bilateral cultural tiesbetween the two countries. Another of the Group's prioritieswas to promote the teaching of the Italian language throughoutBrazil. In Rio de Janeiro the Italian government, inconjunction with the State Secretariat for Education, isimplementing the "Dupla Escola" programme, which promotes theteaching of Italian in the country's public education system.Demand for Italian language courses is growing throughout thecountry and Italy would like to satisfy this by entering intoas many similar agreements with the other States in theFederation. vel.