By WGBH News
Dec. 9, 2011
BOSTON — Deval Patrick finishes his nine-day trade mission to South America on Friday excited by new collaborations with countries there.
Massachusetts may be smaller than some of the states that have lured foreign leaders into trade deals — California, for instance. But Patrick told WGBH News’ Jordan Weinstein on Dec. 8 that the Commonwealth’s emphasis on innovation is a big attractor for South American leaders.
In Brazil, the administration signed an agreement with a Brazilian agriculture research corporation, Patrick said: “They’re very interested in technology coming out of UMass that enables them to increase their yield. That’s very promising.”
Another agreement was signed in Chile “with a great emphasis on clean and alternative energy, which is something we can learn about from them and they can learn about from us,” he said.
Patrick also shared his opinion of the hot topic at home: Occupy Boston.
“I think the Occupy movement has been important for all of us because they’re calling attention to issues and concerns on everybody’s mind,” he said. “Issues of income inequality, questions about whether the American Dream itself is up for grabs.”
Despite the divide in public opinion, Patrick believed that both those in the Occupy Wall Street movement and many who themselves work on Wall Street shared the same concerns for the country.