Regions of Brazil

Regions of Brazil

Brazil is currently divided into five regions (also called macroregions) by the Instituto Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatistica (IBGE). These divisions are composed of states with similar cultural, economical, historical and social aspects, and although through the scientific point of view information given by this type of division is not very accurate, because official information given by the IBGE uses this system, this division is the most widely used in Brazil.

North Region

*Area: 3.869.637,9 km²(4444)
*Population: 12.833.383 hab (3,31hab/km²; 6.2%)
*GDP: ~9.6bi US$ (2%)
*HDI: ~0.764
*Climate: Equatorial (high temperatures and high annual precipitation)
*States: Acre, Amapá, Amazonas, Pará, Rondônia, Roraima and Tocantins
*Largest Cities: Manaus (1.403.796); Belém (1.279.861); Ananindeua (392.947); Porto Velho (314.525); Macapá (282.745); Santarém (262.721); Rio Branco (252.885); Boa Vista (220.383); Palmas (208.000).
*Economy: Iron, Energy production, electronic manufacturing, latex, tourism.
*Transport: Mainly rivers (which are abundant in the region). Highways are scarce and present mainly in the east. Airplanes are commonly used in small remote communities and sometimes in the larger cities

*Vegetation: Almost the entire region is covered by the Amazon Rainforest, except the state of Tocantins, with a savanna-like vegetation (cerrado). Although most of the native vegetation still remains, the region suffers critical problems from deforestation occurring quickly in the area
*Marcant characteristics: Presence of the Amazon Rainforest, that is the vegetation dominant in every state but Tocantins. Cities are all spread apart in the region, that has the lowest population density of the country. Very few paved highways passes the region, that is almost isolated from the rest of the country. It is also the biggest region of Brazil, being responsible for almost half of the Brazilian territorial extension. Economic growth above national average (especially in Amazonas and in Tocantins)

Northeast Region

*Area: 1.561.177 km² (27.50%)
*Population: 47.700.000 hab (30.55 hab/km²; 27%)
*GDP: ~48.1bi US$ (~12%)
*HDI: ~0.716
*Climate: Very hot all the year long, Tropical near the coast and semi-arid in the interior; semi-equatorial in the far west of the region.
*States: Alagoas, Bahia, Ceará, Maranhão, Paraíba, Pernambuco, Piauí, Rio Grande do Norte, Sergipe
*Largest Cities: Salvador (2.892.625); Fortaleza (2.138.234); Recife (1.421.993); São Luís (868.047); Maceió (796.842); Teresina (714.583); Natal (709.536); João Pessoa (595.429); Jaboatão dos Guararapes; (580.795); Feira de Santana (481.137); Aracaju (461.083); Olinda (368.666); Campina Grande (354.546).
*Economy: Tourism, cocoa, machinery manufacturing, textiles.
*Transport: Mainly highways, which are more abundant along the coast, although transport by sea is also important
*Vegetation: Desert-like vegetation mainly, with tropical forests along the coast and in the west, and savanna-like vegetation in the southwest
*Marcant characteristics: This region was the first found by the Portuguese, and the first Brazilian capital, Salvador, was founded here. Lowest social indicators of the country, but had the best economic growth (above national average) between 2000 and 2003

Center-West Region

*Area: 1.612.077,2 km² (28,3%)
*Population: 11.616.750 hab (7,2 hab/km²; 6,4%)
*GDP: ~40bi US$ (8%)
*HDI: ~0.818
*Climate: Savanna climate (hot, with relative few precipitation during the year) in the northeast and the east; Tropical in the east and in the west; Equatorial in the north
*States: Goiás, Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul; along with Distrito Federal (Federal District), where Brazil's national capital, Brasília, is situated.
*Largest Cities: Brasília (2.043.169); Goiânia (1.090.737); Campo Grande (662.534); Cuiabá (483.044); Aparecida de Goiânia (335.849); Anápolis (287.666).
*Economy: Pecuary, Soybeans, tourism.
*Transport: Highways where they are present (mostly in the center and east regions); transport by rivers is common in the north and in the east; airplanes are used in remote and smaller communities.
*Vegetation: Mainly savanna-like vegetation, including the Pantanal (Chaco, in Paraguay), flooded areas in the west, equatorial rainforests in the north.
*Marcant characteristics: Low population density, marcant presence of pecuary instead of agriculture - The region is the least industrialized in the country, based mainly in food & meat processing

outheast Region

*Area: 927.286 km² (12%)
*Population: 72.300.000 hab (42.7% of Brazil’s population) (77,96 hab/km², 38%)
*GDP(nominal): ~320bi US$ (58,5%)
*HDI: ~0.817
*Tropical in the northwest (warm, relatively dry in the winter and wet in the summer); Semi-arid in the north; Temperate in the south
*States: Espírito Santo, Minas Gerais, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo
*Largest Cities: São Paulo (10.405.867); Rio de Janeiro (5.851.914); Belo Horizonte (2.232.747); Guarulhos (1.071.268); Campinas (968.172); Nova Iguaçu (915.366); São Gonçalo (889.828); Duque de Caxias (770.865); São Bernardo do Campo (701.289); Osasco (650.993); Santo André (648.443); Contagem (600.236); São José dos Campos (538.909); Ribeirão Preto (505.053); Uberlândia (500.488); Sorocaba (494.649); Niterói (458.465); Juiz de Fora (456.432); Santos (412.243), Vila Velha (357.952), Jundiaí (340.907), Bauru (310.000), Vitória (291.941)
*Economy: Machine and electronic manufacturing, automobile and aviation industry, coffee, soil, sugar cane, tourism, oil&sub-products (gasoline, diesel, etc), textiles, energy production (not sufficient, however, to attend its demand); it is the business-economic center of Brazil, most bigger Brazilians companies and foreign companies installed in Brazil have their headquarters installed in this region
*Transport: The region is heavily covered by highways, and to some extent, railways. Railways and rivers are used mainly for freight, and used when they are present. Regional, domestic and international air routes connects larger cities, with the main hubs for airlines in the country
*Vegetation: Mainly tropical-like semideciduous forests (Mata Atlântica), semi-arid in the north, with almost no vegetation, savannah-like vegetation in the west and in the northwest (cerrado). Very little of the native vegetation still remains (~2%, mostly in parks)
*Marcant characteristics: The southeast region is the major powerhouse of the Brazilian economy, being responsible for 58% of the Brazilian GDP (~320 bi US$). It is also the most populated region in the country, where the two national metropolitan regions of the country are located (São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro), among other three regional metropolitan regions, Belo Horizonte, Campinas and Santos.

outh Region

*Area: 577.214 km² (6,2%)
*Population: 25.800.000 hab (43,46 hab/km², 12,5%)
*GDP: ~91,5bi US$ (16,5%)
*HDI: ~0.831
*Climate: Subtropical in almost all the entire region, hot to moderately hot in the summer and mild (though cold for Brazilian standards) and very humid winters. Snow is extremely rare except for the highlands where some occasional light snow might fall. The northeast part of the region has a Tropical climate, being hot in the summer and warm/cool during the winter, with some cold days.
*States: Paraná, Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina
*Largest Cities: Curitiba (1.586.848); Porto Alegre (1.630.033); Londrina (446.822); Joinville (429.004); Caxias do Sul (360.223); Florianópolis (341.781); Pelotas (323.034); Canoas (305.711); Maringá (288.465); Ponta Grossa (281.000); Blumenau (277.500); Cascavel (273.000); Foz do Iguaçu (269.585); Santa Maria (243.396), Rio Grande (238.000)
*Economy: Machinery and automobile industry, textiles, tourism, energy production, information technology, soil, orange, apple, grapefruit.
*Transport: Highways and railways are heavily present throughout the region, although the latter is mainly used for freight. Rivers are used when possible.
*Vegetation: Rainforests along the coast (Mata Atlântica), tropical semiciduous in the north and west (Araucárias) and prairie-like vegetation in the south (Pampas). Little native vegetation still actually remains
*Marcant characteristics: The South region is characterized by its high standard of living, with the best social indicators of the country - The best city to live in and the best capitals to live in are all here:Florianópolis, HDI of 0.875; Porto Alegre, HDI of 0.885; Curitiba, HDI of 0.856 (information of 1996). The region, along with the state of São Paulo, is characterized also for the strong immigrant presence (Italians, Germans, Portuguese, Spanish, Poles, Japanese, Arabs, Ukrainians and Lithuanians), that gave the region their typical aspects (architecture, culinary, agriculture of subsistence, etc).


*"The number in % between parenthesis is the percentage compared to the whole nation"
*"The population of the cities (e.g. Curitiba, 1.586.848) is valid only for the city itself, not the whole metropolitan region"

ee also

*Brazil Socio-Geographic Division
*List of cities in Brazil
*List of major cities in Brazil

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