Brazil promises UAE travellers a cultural trip
TTN spoke to Carlos Brito, newly appointed Minister of Tourism of Brazil, to gain more insight into the country’s tourism attractions.
What would travellers from the region like in Brazil?
Brazil is the second country that has the most natural resources in the world, in addition to having 7 natural heritage sites recognized by UNESCO, 74 national parks and being the only country to have 6 distinct biomes: Caatinga, Cerrado, Atlantic Forest, Pampas, Pantanal and Amazon, which make up a diversity of unique landscapes.
The country also has more than 2,000 beaches bathed by the Atlantic Ocean, spread over 7,000 km of coastline, between coastal capitals, bays and oceanic islands. Nature is highlighted by the Amazon Forest, with more than 80 per cent of preserved areas and incomparable flora and fauna. In addition, there is the exuberance of the Iguaçu Falls, recognized as one of the seven natural wonders of the world.
Allied to the cultural and gastronomic diversity of Brazil and the receptivity of the Brazilian people, nature makes all regions of the country a huge attraction for tourists from all over the world. Visitors who seek to appreciate these attributes, both for fun and for relaxation, can choose from numerous leisure options, theme parks and relaxation in spas, to enjoy family trips, or enjoy the entertainment generated by the busy nightlife for travellers interested in this option.
What are some luxury travel opportunities?
Luxury tourism in Brazil is marked by authenticity, diversity and sustainability. The services offered in this segment fully cater to the most demanding tourists looking for exclusive and authentic experiences, according to the specifics of each region. The originality of the local culture is represented by the iconic architecture, artisanal decoration, quality of the facilities, high cuisine and exceptional treatments in resorts, spas and spaces reserved for rest and relaxation with international standard service.
From North to South of the country, the accommodations geared towards luxury tourism are rooted in the forests, surrounded by the mountains or embraced by the sea and provide an immediate connection between the traveller and the destination, with Brazilian culture, traditions, rhythms, dances, landscapes, flavours, smells and colours.
What are some cultural connections between Brazil and the Arab world?
The Arab community represents 6 per cent of the Brazilian population, according to the Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce. Some 45 per cent make up the A and B classes and 10 per cent of the Brazilian business community are Arabs or descendants. Seven out of ten members of the Arab-Brazilian community are involved with the Arab cultural tradition. Gastronomy, in this context, has a strong weight.
In our country, famous dishes such as esfiha, tabbouleh, kibbeh and chickpeas, among others, have won the Brazilian palate. Descendants of Arabs are proud of their roots.
Among other institutions linked to culture, Campo Grande (MS) has the Arab Cultural Center – Ariche – where Arab dance and music presentations are held and Arab dishes are served to connoisseurs. An important and great Belly Dance event that takes place annually in the country is the “Persa Market”.
Foz do Iguaçu (PR), in the southern region, has one of the largest Arab-Muslim communities in Brazil, predominantly Lebanese, with approximately 25,000 people.
Can foreigners invest in Brazil?
There are several investment opportunities for foreigners in Brazil, mainly due to new legislation introduced by the current Brazilian federal government whose main objective is to open the market to the participation of the national and international private sector. In the tourism sector, there is now the possibility for foreign airlines to operate in the country without the obligation to open a branch in the national territory, a measure that adds to the end of the limit of foreign capital in the air sector. In addition, the Brazilian Ministry of Tourism organized an “Investment Portal” with 67 published enterprises, both public and private, with investment opportunities ranging from 20 to 800 thousand dollars in various tourism sectors. With the success of these actions, a direct contribution of R$ 29 billion is estimated.
There are also excellent opportunities for foreigners to participate in airport and National Park concession auctions in all regions of Brazil.
* Excerpts from a recent interview with TTN Middle East. An unabridged version of the interview is available online