08/08/2011 01:15 EDT | Updated 10/08/2011 05:12 EDT

U.S. Credit Downgrade: Stephen Harper Reportedly Disagrees With S&P's Decision


BRASILIA, Brazil - The president of Brazil says she and Prime Minister Stephen Harper don't agree with Standard & Poor's decision to downgrade the credit rating of the United States.

Dilma Rousseff called the credit-rating agency's decision "incorrect," as Harper looked on during a signing ceremony for a handful of small trade deals today.

Harper is on a four-country swing through Latin America where he is trying to boost trade.

He and Rousseff announced deals on air transport, social security, Olympic co-operation, and international development aid effectiveness.

They also announced a business leaders' forum that would see Canadian and Brazilian executives meet on the margins of high-level diplomatic talks.

"Brazil is a major global economic player and a key priority market for Canada," Harper said in a press release.

"These agreements will benefit both countries by promoting greater two-way flow of people, goods and services, enhancing our competitiveness and further strengthening our partnership in key areas of shared interest."

There was a tussle between the Prime Minister's Office and Brazilian officials when media were blocked from a previously agreed-upon photo-op at the beginning of the leaders' meeting. Brazilian officials refused to yield despite the protests of PMO and Canadian embassy staff.

Media were eventually allowed in — after the meeting.