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PROFILE-Brazil's Finance Minister Guido Mantega
Position: Finance Minister of Brazil
Incumbent: Guido Mantega, 61
Term: Began in March 2006.
-- A long-time advocate of more development spending in Brazil, Mantega has presided over the country's rapid economic rebound from a global financial crisis last year.
-- Under his watch, the Finance Ministry took a series of measures to lift Latin America's largest economy from recession, reducing taxes for key industries as the National Treasury lent billions of dollars to the state development bank BNDES. More recently, Mantega defended the creation of a state insurer to bolster massive investments in infrastructure before the World Cup in 2014 and Olympic Games in 2016.
-- Brazil's economy has rebounded quickly, posting 9 percent annual growth in the first quarter of 2010, its fastest rate in at least 14 years. The rapid growth has cemented Brazil's position as one of the world's top emerging economies along with India, Russia and China.
-- The government's expansionary spending during an election year has come under criticism, keeping fiscal accounts under pressure despite a rebound in tax revenues.
-- Mantega has in the past publicly disagreed with the central bank over the level of interest rates and his Finance Ministry has worked with more modest 2010 growth projections than the central bank and some market analysts.
-- A long-time member of the ruling Workers' Party, Mantega went to great lengths in 2006 to persuade investors that he was committed to the austere fiscal and economic policies championed by his predecessor, Antonio Palocci, who resigned over a corruption scandal.
-- Mantega was President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva's economic advisor from 1993 to 2002 and one of the coordinators of the Workers' Party's economic program in the 2002 campaign. He also contributed to Workers Party's campaigns in 1984, 1989 and 1998.
-- Mantega previously worked as the planning minister and as the head of the country's BNDES bank.
-- He has also worked as an economics professor and published several books. He graduated in economics from the University of Sao Paulo and has a doctorate in sociology of development from the University of Sao Paulo.
(Reporting by Bruno Peres and Maria Carolina Marcello; Writing by Ana Nicolaci da Costa; Editing by Paul Simao)
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