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Byline: Richard Brand and Nancy San Martin
SAO PAULO, Brazil _ At a Wal-Mart-like retail store in this sprawling industrial city, Edivaldo Ribeiro strolls by a wall of Brazilian-made television sets with images of a Portuguese-speaking Scooby Doo, and he passes the flat screen plasma TVs selling for thousands of dollars.
He stops in front of a much more modest model with a 14-inch screen, peers at the sale tag, then steps back, blanching at the price of about $150.
"This TV is more than half my salary," said Ribeiro, 36, who earns about $275 a month. "I can't afford to pay for this right now. I'm just looking to see if maybe I can get it by the end of the year."
The cost of the Brazilian TVs _ at least twice what similar models would be in the United States _ reflects just how difficult it is here for many people to buy one.
But if U.S. negotiators at the Free Trade Area of the Americas summit in Miami later this month get their way, …