Guide for expatriates moving, living and working in Brazil, Sao Paulo City Guide, international Movers, aparthotel, relocation,
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Brasil Welcome
Guide for living and working in Brazil
A guide, information, advice and useful addresses to be able to leave well-informed.

Brazil Welcome

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Geographical situation
Economy & statistics


Other sectors
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Main towns


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Health & medicine


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Political Status
Brazil is a Federal Republic with a multipartite regime.
The Congress has two Assemblies : the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies.
The country is divided into 23 states, a federal district and three territories.
This is all amalgamated into 5 regions.

Brazil was discovered by the Portuguese navigator Pedro Alvares Cabral in 1500.
In 1822 Brazil became a sovereign state, from 1500 to 1822 it had been a Portuguese colony.

Geographical situation
Brazil is part of Latin America. It covers 8,511,968 square kilometers, nearly half (48%) of the South American continent. It is about 16 times the size of France.
It is made up of the Amazonian plain, the tropical zone of the sierras, internal plateaus and south-eastern Brazil.

Brazil today is rated the eighth economy in the world.
The internal economic results are better than foreseen after the monetary crisis in January 1999 : inflationary pressure was contained, the country did not sink into recession, in fact the economy showed signs of revival (the growth forecast for the GDP in 2000 is +4%) and the budgetary objectives have been adhered to.
In spite of the devaluation of the Real, Brazil recorded a slight growth and the fact that the capacity of the agricultural sector has been able to substitute for the declining industrial sector partially explains this result, the solidity of the financial system has equally been determining.

The agricultural sector represents about 11% of the GNP (25% of the working population).
It is an important activity, prime materials make up more than half of the country's exports.
Brazil exploits nearly 366,000 square kilometers of arable land (twice as much as France).
The 9% growth registered by the agricultural sector in 1999 goes a long way to explain why Brazil did not suffer from a recession.


Brazil has a wealth of natural resources with a diversified related economy.
The currently expanding sectors are telecommunications, energy (petrol, gas and electricity), computer sciences, foodstuffs, the ports and the iron and steel processing industries.
Mining (per millions of tons, gold and silver per ton, diamonds per thousands of carats)

Other sectors
The service sector represents 62% of the GNP, and employs nearly 50% of the working population.
High tech services are developing :
Telecom Italia for example invested 800 million dollars in Internet in June 2000. Brazil is one the most developed countries in the world in on-line banking, nearly 4.5 million bank accounts are managed via Internet.

which is the capital of Brazil since 21st April 1960, and its suburbs has a population of one million seven hundred thousand inhabitants.

Rio de Janeiro
relinquished its title of capital to Brazilia, but remains the second biggest and splendid town of Brazil with its 6 million inhabitants.
Rio continues to be the capital of the legendary Brazil of beaches, carnival, football and samba, and is its cultural centre, its brand image, its synthesis, its sounding box.

Sao Paulo
Is the financial centre of Brazil and boasts 10 million inhabitants. It is the privileged target of private investors (43% of 1999's industrial investment ).

Brazil is an immense country and the climatic variations are such that it is impossible to be precise on an ideal period for a visit.
The seasons are inversed with those of the USA and Europe.
About 80% of the country is situated in a tropical zone.

There are snakes and scorpions in the south-east of the country, with lots of pernilongos and borachudos. There are a lot of mosquitoes in the towns, which are especially active after sundown.
In Amazonia there are flies, spiders and ants ... as well as :


Working in Brazil :
Before leaving.
It is advisable to learn or improve your level of Portuguese.
Entry formalities. You can enter Brazil with only a passport and a tourist visa, there are no other particular formalities to be completed if you are staying less than three months. You can renew this visa once.
But if you are going to prospect or study the market it would be better to apply for a work visa before going. This will make it easier for you to deal with local companies. When you negotiate a contract you will not have to ask for a visa and will gain time.

Formalities to be complete
Non-professional travellingFrench nationals need a visa.
In order to get one you will need :
a passport valid for more than 6 months, a return ticket or a ticket with a continuation to another country

17 - Health
All the salaried workers in Brazil are covered by the Brazilian social security system (INSS).
This covers treatment in the public hospitals. These are not very good, under-equipped and under-staffed. I

Your suitcase
From December to April take summer clothes, preferably in cotton or linen with one or two sweaters for the airconditioning and a raincoat.
For May to November take more woollens and a jacket for the evenings.
If you are going to Brazilia, Sao Paulo and the south coast take light clothing with something to protect you in the cool evenings and from the winter wind.
If you are going to Amazonia take cotton clothing which is easy to look after and covers you completely to avoid mosquito bites. You will probably also need a light jacket in this part of Brazil.


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