Brazil - Statistics & Facts

With an area of approximately 8.5 million square kilometers, Brazil is the fifth largest country in the world. In 2016, the country had a population amounting to around 206 million people, a figure which continues to increase. Brazil’s largest cities are São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Salvador.

Brazil is also among the leading emerging countries, the so-called BRIC states (Brazil, Russia, India, and China). Its gross domestic product (GDP) amounted to almost 2.08 trillion U.S. dollars in 2017, not only making it one of the largest economies in the world, but also positioning it to displace Italy in the ranking. However, after years of high growth rates, economic growth in Brazil decreased to 0.5 percent in 2014, estimates even show a -3.6 percent contraction in 2016. Brazil's economic growth is not expected to return to previous heights before 2019. GDP per capita fell sharply due to the recent recession and is not expected to recover quickly. Still, it is on par the GDP per capita of other emerging economies.

Brazil’s unemployment rate has increased considerably in recent years. While fewer than 9 percent of Brazilians were unemployed in through most of the last decade, the unemployment rate jumped nearly five percentage points from 2015 to 2017, bringing it to 13.3 percent. However, 2017 also saw a five percentage point reduction in the inflation rate, bringing it down to a healthy 3.5 percent.

Brazil's exports are worth approximately 218 billion U.S. dollars, and imported goods are valued at about 158 billion U.S. dollars. It is thus neither a leading export nor a leading import country. Its most important export and import partners are China, the United States and Argentina.

Brazil’s national debt has increased over the last few years, projected to pass the 90 percent threshold in the near future. Additionally, the budget deficit increased significantly during the crisis, projected to remain larger than 7 percent of GDP for the foreseeable future.

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