Brazil. On April 21, the 500th anniversary of the first Portuguese (Pedro Álvares Cabral) was celebrated in Brazil. The event was surrounded by protests from various popular movements, including the landless organization MST, which on May 2 occupied federal buildings in eight different states in protest of the government’s land reform program. However, the action was criticized by some of MST’s most important support organizations, such as the church and the Labor Party PT (Partido dos Trabalhadores), and the government pointed out that 12 million hectares of land have been distributed since President Fernando Henrique Cardosos took office in 1995 – twice as much as the previous one decade.
In the second round of mayoral elections on October 29, PT made great progress and won in 178 cities, including the industrial metropolis of São Paulo. The elections are considered to be the informal introduction to the 2002 presidential election. Despite a good economic outlook with 3.5% expected growth and relatively low inflation, the president’s popularity declined steadily during the year, mainly due to continued high unemployment.
- ABBREVIATIONFINDER: Offers three letter and two letter abbreviations for the country of Brazil. Also covers country profile such as geography, society and economy.
After four months of referral work, the National Environment Commission (Conama) in April proposed a law intended to protect 80% of the Amazon forest. The environmental movement welcomed the proposal, but at the same time regretted that only 35% of Brazil’s savannah areas receive equivalent protection. The rate of harvesting of forests in Brazil, which has both the world’s largest biodiversity and the world’s most stringent environmental legislation, has increased again after a slowdown in the early 1990s, mainly through forestry companies’ operations.
Requirements for independence
The export-oriented economic expansion particularly benefited the local bourgeoisie, which increasingly expressed its reluctance at the Portuguese intervention in its trade with Europe. Towards the end of the 18th century, the first independence movements in the colony arose, but they were quickly defeated by the central power. Brazil’s most important symbol of liberty, Second Lieutenant Tiradentes, was executed in 1792 for its prominent role in the so-called “Mine conspiracy” three years earlier.
Napoleon’s 1808 invasion of the Iberian Peninsula motivated the Portuguese king, Don Juan VI, to move the court to Brazil, giving the country a de-facto status of halfway independence. The central power no longer acted as an intermediary, and Brazil began direct trade with its main trading partner: Britain. Brazilian commercial citizenship was favored at the expense of sectors linked to the Portuguese monopoly. The revolution in Porto, Portugal in 1821 was an attempt to restore the old monopolistic colonial system. The King returned home to Portugal, but the Brazilian citizenship did not want to lose the territory it had won and with the backing of Britain declared Brazil independent. Brazil was made imperial and the regent crowned Emperor Pedro I.
Chaotic state formation
The following decade was one of the most volatile in Brazil’s history. In 1831-35, a triple government power tried in vain to end the civil war in the provinces and bring an end to the disobedience of the military. In 1834, the constitution was amended with regard to. decentralization of government. Provincial assemblies were set up with extensive local powers, and it was decided to elect rulers for four-year terms. In 1835, the priest Diego Antonio Feijóo was elected to this office. For the next 2 years, he fought against the rising resolution in the country, but without success. In 1837 he had to resign and was succeeded by Pedro Araújo Lima. In the south, the gauchos had revolted. It came to span 10 years from 1835-45 and became known as the Farrapo War. The Brazilians were getting pretty tired of state power, and hoped to find a total element of an emperor. In 1840, the aging Pedro de Alcántara was therefore deployed to the throne as Pedro II.
During the empire that stretched until 1889, Brazil consolidated its national unity and expanded the borders created by gang rants in the 17th and 18th centuries. The expansion of the territory was emphasized with the incorporation of the province of Cisplatina in the south, the Triple Alliance war against Paraguay where Brazil conquered 90,000 km2 and finally the end of the century the annexation of the Bolivian Acre province. However, in 1828, Cisplatina proclaimed its independence as the Republic of Oriental del Uruguay, and thus Brazil’s southern border was finally established.
Under Emperor Pedro II, the population grew from 4 to 14 million, but the economy continued to be based on the latifundi and exports of tropical agricultural products – primarily coffee. Slavery was first abolished in 1888, and this development accelerated the merger of the monarchy. But for the black population, the abolition did not mean major political or social changes. They remained out of political life when illiterate people did not have the right to vote.
Record effort against criminal gang
The police are launching what is said to be the largest operation against drug trafficking to date in the country, targeting the largest gang of PCCs. More than 1,000 police officers are taking part in the operation, which aims to arrest 422 people and carry out raids and seized assets at 201 locations in 19 states. The São Paulo-based gang PCC gets $ 46.6 million in bank assets blocked and 1.1 million in cash seized, police say.
Rio’s governor suspended, accused of bribery
The Supreme Court has suspended Governor Wilson Witzel from office for at least 180 days, and police are raiding his home. Witzel is suspected of having stolen the equivalent of $ 50 million that would have gone to efforts against the corona pandemic (see also June 10, 2020). Several people in Witzel’s vicinity were also arrested, including Pastor Everaldo, who is the leader of his party, the Social Christian Party (PSC), far to the right. Accusations of large sums being swindled have been made since the outbreak of the pandemic. Of seven planned field hospitals, two have only been opened in the state, which is the second hardest hit in Brazil, after São Paulo. Five of Rio de Janeiro’s last six governors have now been jailed or are under investigation for crimes.
Another Bolsonaro corona infected
The president’s son Flávio Bolsonaro states that he tested positive for the coronavirus. The 39-year-old senator who is under investigation for embezzlement (see December 2019) is the fourth in the family to be infected. He announces that he intends to isolate himself at home and, like his former father Jair Bolsonaro, take the malaria medicine chloroquine (see July 2020). Earlier, the president’s wife Michelle and another president’s son, 22-year-old Jair Renan, also tested positive.
Bolsonaro’s popularity is growing
President Jair Bolsonaro gets the best popularity figures so far during his term, as 37 percent of those polled give him the thumbs up. At the same time, the proportion who clearly do not think he does a good job decreases by 10 percentage points, to 34 percent. One reason for the increased support, in the middle of the pandemic crisis, is the support money paid out. Brazil has recently passed 100,000 deaths in covid-19, the second highest number in the world (after the United States) and over 3 million cases of infection. There is currently no indication that the spread of infection is about to decrease. In the opinion poll, conducted by Datafolha on 11–12 August, just over 2,000 people were interviewed by telephone.
The interest rate is at a record low
The central bank is once again lowering interest rates, now to a 2 percent low, due to the economic crisis in the wake of the corona pandemic. This is the ninth reduction in a row since June 2019, when it was 6.5 percent. Despite the low policy rate, many commercial interest rates are still high, often higher than before the pandemic, as banks try to hedge against losses due to bankruptcy.
According to COUNTRYAAH, the population of Brazil in 2000 was 174,790,229, ranking number 5 in the world. The population growth rate was 1.530% yearly, and the population density was 20.9126 people per km2.