News from Brazil

Culture & Regional

In Brazil on January 7, 2011 at 1:36 pm

BUILDING PROJECT OF THE WEEK

Oscar Niemeyer’s 103rd birthday last month was also celebrated in Foz do Iguaçu in the state of Paraná. The architect designed the new headquarters of the Federal University of Latin American Integration (Unila), whose construction was tendered by the president of the university, Hélgio Trindade, during the opening of the Mercosul Social Summit, in Cine-Teatro dos Barrageiros, in the Itaipu hydroelectric complex (Senado Federal).

SCIENCE

Popular with foreigners looking for sun, sea and samba, Brazil wants to turn itself into a hot destination for seekers of science. Though its own bright graduates still head to Europe or the United States for PhDs or post-doctoral fellowships, nowadays that is more because science is an international affair than because they cannot study at home. The country wants more of them to return afterwards, and for the traffic to become two-way (The Economist).

BAHIA

The board of directors of the Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES) approved R$ 588.9 million in financing for the construction of nine wind parks in the municipalities of Igaporã, Guanambi and Caetité, in the interior of Bahia state. The Bank will enter with 74.35% of the total investment, R$ 792.2 million, contributing to the creation of 2,970 direct and indirect jobs in the semiarid region of Bahia during project construction (BNDES).

ILHA GRANDE

If paradise exists in the form of unspoiled wild beaches, aquamarine waters and undulating green mountains, then Brazil has many; but none quite like the bay of Ilha Grande. Sitting along the coast of Rio de Janeiro state as part of Angra dos Reis, not only is Ilha Grande the largest oceanic island in Brazil, but it is also a pristine remainder of the Atlantic rainforest and cherished ecosystem (The Rio Times).

MANAUS

The Rio drug trade turns this Amazon city into a crime capital as a growing local market for cocaine triggers a rise in killings (The Guardian).
RIO

The official Rio2016 logo was unveiled.

Will Rio de Janeiro be ready to host the Olympics in 2016? The scale of the challenge is phenomenal. On top of the usual demands on transport and accommodation posed by big sporting events, this one is being held in a city where much housing is perched precariously, without foundations, on the sides of steep hills, and where crime rates are astronomical (The Economist).

The Holidays are over and for most people living in Rio, it means the party season has officially started. From now on, it is summer heat, lots of parties, and fantastic samba, all leading up to Carnival 2011 which is in March this year (The Rio Times).

‘I look at Rio’s future, I see a mixture of California, New York and Houston,’ says entrepreneur Eike Batista. Read the full story about Brazil’s richest man in The Guardian.

The Rio Times has compiled a list of ten interesting individuals who have made an impact in Rio de Janeiro’s foreign community in 2010 (The Rio Times).

Just before Christmas, the second phase of the occupation of the infamous Complexo do Alemão and Penha favelas started.  The new peace keeping force, Força de Pacificação, is now in charge of security in areas within Rio’s Zona Norte (North zone), and remains a joint effort between the Brazilian army and police following last month’s operations (The Rio Times).

In the National History Museum there has been a revitalization of the permanent exhibitions, ready to receive locals and visitors from December (Rio Official Guide).

Adjoining the famous Copacabana beach is the lesser known but just as spectacular Leme beach. This small area which sits between Morro do Leme and Morro da Babilônia, offers the views and beach as does Copacabana but without the chaos. Here a real estate gem can be found for those who want the city without the congestion (The Rio Times).

Police say they have taken control of three poor districts near the Maracana stadium (BBC).

Police last month dismantled a criminal gang which is accused of running an arms trafficking and extortion ring in a poor neighbourhood of Rio de Janeiro. Around 200 officers swooped into the Duque de Caxias area and arrested at least 20 alleged gang members, 13 of whom are policemen (BBC).

SPLIT SECOND POLLS

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SAO PAULO

Residents of a town 190 miles from São Paulo have kept alive the ancient indigenous tradition by cooking and serving ants with traditional Brazilian dishes. These are no ordinary ants scampering over sugary leftovers, like the tiny American variety. Içás are big — up to an inch in length — and fat, and they can bite viciously. But the changing landscape means the ants are under threat, residents contend (New York Times).

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