Brazil Country Report

Year of Publication
SMITS Yolanda
Organization Name
Preparatory Action
Country of Publication
Full Date
March 26, 2014
Considered Countries
Country - European Union
European Union
Foreign Policy
International Cultural Relations
Member States
National Institutions
In November 2013 the Brazilian government began drafting a new strategy for culture in external relations, a step that reflects the importance the country now attaches to this domain. The Ministry of Culture is responsible for preparing this new strategy, in close cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Development, Industry and Trade, the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation and the Ministry of Tourism. The government was planning to release new guidelines in this domain in early 2014. A number of factors have accelerated the government’s decision to prepare a new strategy: 1) Brazil’s attractiveness as one of the BRICS countries; 2) increased interest in the country around the world, particularly as regards cultural cooperation with it; 3) expanded cultural offer within Brazil and 4) the organisation of the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games, which oblige the authorities to decide on the country’s international branding and image. The new strategy will encompass a wide range of subjects including: 1) the branding and image building of Brazil; 2) the promotion of the country’s cultural and regional diversity; 3) the development and international projection of the Brazilian cultural and creative sector; 4) the improvement of the country’s cultural diplomacy networks abroad; 5) the organisation of small and large scale cultural interventions abroad; 6) private and public cooperation; 7) the export of Brazil´s social technology projects; and 8) cultural diplomacy and culture as ‘soft power’. The current cultural diplomacy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs consists of actions to promote the dissemination and distribution of the diversity of Brazilian culture to achieve cultural as well as political, commercial, economic, scientific and technological objectives. To broaden its cooperation with the private sector, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs created in 2011 a Cultural Diplomacy Forum to promote dialogue with Brazilian companies active abroad and who are willing to assist in the dissemination of Brazil´s culture. Brazil has organised and been the guest of honour in a number of major cultural events abroad in recent years, all aimed at highlighting the complexity and richness of cultural life in Brazil. The latest have been: Midem in February 2014, the Frankfurt Book Fair in October 2013, the Month of Brazil in China in September 2013, the Year of Brazil in Portugal and Year of Portugal in Brazil from September 2012 to June 2013, and the country’s presence at Europalia in Brussels, Belgium from October 2011 to January 2012. Cultural activities are sponsored extensively by banks and large companies through the ‘Lei Rouanet’ (Rouanet Act), the country’s well-known tax incentive scheme. Most of their activities with an international dimension, however, involve bringing other cultures to Brazil rather than the projection of Brazilian culture abroad. Brazilian and European stakeholders see significant added value in an EU strategy for culture in external relations, for it could optimize the many features that Brazil and the EU have in common. The Brazilian government has a positive assessment of Brazil-EU cultural cooperation to date and looks forward to engaging in a more strategic relationship with the EU, despite increasing competition for the country’s attentions from many other countries.
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