January 21, 2022
Brazil (Portuguese: Brasil /bɾaˈziw/), in long form the Federative Republic of Brazil (República Federativa do Brasil), is the largest state in Latin America. Brazil designated as a country-continent, is the fifth largest country on the planet, behind Russia, Canada, the United States and China. With an area of 8,514,876 km2, the country covers almost half of the territory of South America (47.3%), sharing borders with Uruguay and Argentina to the south, Paraguay to the south- southwest, Bolivia to the west-southwest, Peru to the west, Colombia to the west-northwest, Venezuela to the northwest, Guyana to the north-northwest, the Suriname and France to the north (via Guyana), i.e. most of the countries on the continent except Chile and Ecuador. The country has a population of 213 million. A former Portuguese colony, Brazil's official language is Portuguese, while most Latin American countries have Spanish as their official language. In 2017, according to the IMF, Brazil's GDP amounted to 2,054 billion US dollars, making it the eighth largest economy in the world. Considered as a major emerging power, the country is notably a member of the United Nations, Mercosul, the G20 and the BRICS. Militarily, the Brazilian armed forces are ranked among the top twenty military powers and remain the most important on the American continent, behind that of the United States. Despite the size of its economy, Brazil remains one of the countries with the highest social and economic inequalities in the world. In 2017, Brazil is the third country in Latin America for social inequality after Honduras and Colombia. With China, India or Russia, Brazil is considered one of the few countries to have the potential to one day become a world superpower. The Brazilian population is characterized by significant ethnic and cultural diversity: according to the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE), in Brazil there are 47.7% Whites, 43.1% Mestizos, 7.6% black and approximately 2% Asian and Native American. A large number of Brazilians have ancestors from European countries, mainly Portugal, then Italy, Germany or Spain. The majority of black Brazilians, meanwhile, are from sub-Saharan Africa, primarily Angola. Like its neighbours, Brazil is a country with a Christian majority (89%). With 123 million faithful, it is the second Christian nation in the world (behind the United States, whose majority of the population is Protestant) and the first Catholic nation. Rich in natural resources, Brazil has been identified as a new oil power. Huge pre-salt oil deposits have been discovered in the Santos and Campos basins, off Rio de Janeiro. Recoverable reserves have constantly been re-estimated upwards: in 2013, they were estimated at 106 billion barrels according to the IEA, "i.e. more reserves discovered in Brazil than in any other country" underlines the 'OUCH.