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Brazil - Country facts

Map

Small map of Brazil
Click for a larger map

Flag

Country flag: Brazil

Capital

Brasilia

Currency

real (BRL)

Internet Code

.br

Location

Eastern South America, bordering the Atlantic Ocean

Background

Following three centuries under the rule of Portugal, Brazil became an independent nation in 1822. By far the largest and most populous country in South America, Brazil overcame more than half a century of military intervention in the governance of the country when in 1985 the military regime peacefully ceded power to civilian rulers. Brazil continues to pursue industrial and agricultural growth and development of its interior. Exploiting vast natural resources and a large labor pool, it is today South America's leading economic power and a regional leader. Highly unequal income distribution remains a pressing problem.

Climate

mostly tropical, but temperate in south

Terrain

mostly flat to rolling lowlands in north; some plains, hills, mountains, and narrow coastal belt

Population

186,112,794
note: Brazil took a count in August 2000, which reported a population of 169,799,170; that figure was

Ethnic Groups

white (includes Portuguese, German, Italian, Spanish, Polish) 55%, mixed white and black 38%, black 6%, other (includes Japanese, Arab, Amerindian) 1%

Religions

Roman Catholic (nominal) 80%, other 20%

Languages

Portuguese (official), Spanish, English, French

Map of Brazil

Large map of Brazil
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