Brazil’s most obvious characteristic is its sheer expanse, it is country of genuinely continental dimensions, covering an area only a little smaller than Europe. Because of this vast territory and its privileged location, Brazil commands an immense wealth of natural resources which underpin its economic power and potential.
Among its 26 states and Federal District, Brazil is divided by five macro-regions (North, Northeast, Center-West, Southeast and South), which are characterized by broadly distinct cultural, social and economic aspects. Above this division, there are three geo-economics regions, defined by different natural and, above all, socioeconomic characteristics: the Amazon, the Northeast and the Center-South
Brazil is a federative republic constituted by the union of 26 states, a Federal District and 5 570 municipalities. Every person in the national territory (citizen or foreigner) has rights and duties established by the Brazilian Constitution of 1988.
The region with the largest territory to population ratio, Amazonia consists of the section of the Amazon Forest situated in Brazil and is crossed by the Amazon River, considered the world’s largest in extent and volume of water.
The main economic activities are agriculture, vegetable extraction, mining, and the industry, especially the Industrial Pole of Manaus, one of the most modern industrial and technological centers in Latin America, particularly in the electronics sector.
Urbanized, modern and in constant movement, the region covers almost a third of Brazilian territory and is the country’s most economically developed, housing many of the banks, national and international companies, commerce and universities.
The countries main cities are also located here: São Paulo, the most important economic center and multicultural metropolis; Rio de Janeiro, also known as “Marvelous City”, for its natural beauty and international tourist attractions; and Brasília, the capital of the country and seat of the Brazilian government.
The idea situating the capital of the country in the central region to avoid sea attacks has existed since the Colonial era but it was only in 1956 that the current federal capital of Brazil and seat of government began to be planned and developed. The architect and urbanist Lúcio Costa was chosen to create the project following a simple idea: two-axis lines crossing at right angles, like the sign of the cross. Since one of these lines had a slight incline, it gave the cross the shape of an airplane.
The famous architect Oscar Niemeyer responsible for the construction of the city’s famous monuments. This architectural and urban complex is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and besides being a political center, Brasília very important for the economy of the country, with an vibrant consumer market of 2.9 million people with an income up to three times higher than the national average.
Rio de Janeiro
The second largest economy in Brazil, behind Sao Paulo, the state of Rio de Janeiro is driven by the industrial sector, composed of metallurgical, chemical, food, mechanical, media and cellulose industries. In addition to attracting global tourists to its beautiful natural landscapes, points of interest and cultural events such as the Carnival, the state (more specifically the city of Rio de Janeiro), stands out as the frequent setting for foreign films, making audiovisual production a constantly growing market.
The city currently houses most of the dubbing studios for foreign films and series, and is the headquarters of Grupo Globo, the largest conglomerate of communications and cultural production companies in Latin America.
The most populous city in Brazil and America, and the state capital of the same name is distinctly multicultural. It hosts the largest diasporas of Italian, Portuguese, Japanese, Spanish, Lebanese and Arab origins outside their respective countries.
Essential for the country’s economic development, it is also one of the main communication centers in Brazil and Latin America, home to the two most influential newspapers in the country (Folha de S. Paulo and O Estado de S. Paulo) and many publishers, such as Grupo Abril. It has a rich history in the field of television and advertising, São Paulo pioneered the creation of the country’s first TV station in the 1950s and the first advertising agency in 1914.
The region of greatest territorial expanse in Brazil presents a significant contrast, between the more urban and industrialized coast, and the interior, with its predominance of semiarid climate and socioeconomic challenges. However, it is one of the richest regions in terms cultural manifestations and natural beauty.
Although still little explored by international companies, it has exponentially increased investment in infrastructure, the creation of new tourist hubs, and the development of ecotourism. Four of the ten main Brazilian ecotourism destinations are located in the region: the Fernando de Noronha Archipelago in Pernambuco, the Lençóis Maranhenses dunes in Maranhão, the Chapada Diamantina in Bahia and the Serra da Capivara National Park in Piauí.
As in all of Brazil, the cultural manifestations involve music and dance, and here the highlight is the carnival of Salvador and Recife/Olinda, animated by the rhythm of axé, frevo and maracatu dance styles, as well as the traditional June parties, annual Brazilian celebrations adapted from European Midsummer that take place in the southern midwinter.