Brazil

Country Summary

2022 population pyramid

Introduction

Background

Following more than three centuries under Portuguese rule, Brazil gained its independence in 1822. By far the largest and most populous country in South America, Brazil underwent more than a half century of populist and military government until 1985, when the military regime peacefully ceded power to civilian rulers.

Geography

Area

total: 8,515,770 sq km

land: 8,358,140 sq km

water: 157,630 sq km

Climate

mostly tropical, but temperate in south

Natural resources

alumina, bauxite, beryllium, gold, iron ore, manganese, nickel, niobium, phosphates, platinum, tantalum, tin, rare earth elements, uranium, petroleum, hydropower, timber

People and Society

Population

217,240,060 (2022 est.)

Ethnic groups

White 47.7%, mixed 43.1%, Black 7.6%, Asian 1.1%, Indigenous 0.4% (2010 est.)

Languages

Portuguese (official and most widely spoken language); note - less common languages include Spanish (border areas and schools), German, Italian, Japanese, English, and a large number of minor Amerindian languages

Religions

Roman Catholic 64.6%, other Catholic 0.4%, Protestant 22.2% (includes Adventist 6.5%, Assembly of God 2.0%, Christian Congregation of Brazil 1.2%, Universal Kingdom of God 1.0%, other Protestant 11.5%), other Christian 0.7%, Spiritist 2.2%, other 1.4%, none 8%, unspecified 0.4% (2010 est.)

Population growth rate

0.7% (2022 est.)

Government

Government type

federal presidential republic

Capital

name: Brasilia

Executive branch

chief of state: President Jair BOLSONARO (since 1 January 2019); Vice President Antonio Hamilton Martins MOURAO (since 1 January 2019); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Jair BOLSONARO (since 1 January 2019); Vice President Antonio Hamilton Martins MOURAO (since 1 January 2019)

Legislative branch

description: bicameral National Congress or Congresso Nacional consists of:
Federal Senate or Senado Federal (81 seats; 3 members each from 26 states and 3 from the federal district directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by simple majority vote to serve 8-year terms, with one-third and two-thirds of the membership elected alternately every 4 years)
Chamber of Deputies or Camara dos Deputados (513 seats; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by party-list proportional representation vote to serve 4-year terms)

Economy

Economic overview

industrial-led economic growth model; recovering from 2014-2016 recession when COVID-19 hit; industry limited by Amazon rainforest but increasing deforestation; new macroeconomic structural reforms; high income inequality; left UNASUR to join PROSUR

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$2,989,430,000,000 (2020 est.)

Real GDP per capita

$14,100 (2020 est.)

Agricultural products

sugar cane, soybeans, maize, milk, cassava, oranges, poultry, rice, beef, cotton

Industries

textiles, shoes, chemicals, cement, lumber, iron ore, tin, steel, aircraft, motor vehicles and parts, other machinery and equipment

Exports

$239.18 billion (2020 est.)

Exports - partners

China 28%, United States 13% (2019)

Exports - commodities

soybeans, crude petroleum, iron, corn, wood pulp products (2019)

Imports

$227.44 billion (2020 est.)

Imports - partners

China 21%, United States 18%, Germany 6%, Argentina 6% (2019)

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, vehicle parts, crude petroleum, integrated circuits, pesticides (2019)


Page last updated: Wednesday, May 11, 2022