Santa Catarina (state)
Santa Catarina is a state in the southern region of Brazil. According to the Index of Economic Well-Being calculated between 2002 and 2008, Santa Catarina was the Brazilian state that showed the highest economic well-being in relation to any other state in Brazil. Florianópolis, the state capital lies on Santa Catarina Island, while Joinville is Santa Catarina's largest city and a major industrial and business center in Brazil. Neighboring states are Rio Grande do Sul to Paraná to the north, it is bounded on the east by the Atlantic Ocean, to the west it borders the province of Misiones, Argentina. The beaches along the coast of Santa Catarina are a great summer attraction. Florianópolis, the capital, has one of the highest HDI among Brazilian cities. Florianopolis beaches attract a large flow of foreign tourists during the summer month. There are several daily direct flights between Florianopolis, Buenos Aires and Santiago throughout the summer months. Tourists from Northern Argentina and Paraguay drive into the state - about a 10-hour drive.
The mountain ridge region of the state, centered around São Joaquim and Urupema, becomes an attraction during winter due to its low temperatures and snow over its green canyons. Blumenau, in the Itajai Valley in Northeast Santa Catarina, is the stage to the largest beer festival in Brazil Southern Region, which possess a strong direct influence from Bavarian culture: the Oktoberfest of Blumenau, a traditional beer party/festival that originated in the 19th century, is the second largest such festival in the world, behind only the one held in Munich. Joinville is a major industrial and tech industry center in Brazil. Joinville's metro area is one of the fastest growing regions in Brazil. Joinville is home to the Joinville Dance Festival, the largest dance event in Brazil, held in the month of July Joinville is home to the only branch of the worldly famous Bolshoi Dance Company With a strong reputation for the strength of its industrial output, Joinville has been changing its focus to the service and educational services - Joinville has become a major college center in the past decade.
Balneario Camboriu is a major beach resort city between Joinville. It has been nicknamed the Brazilian Dubai, as it keeps on building the tallest residential buildings in Brazil; some of the most expensive apartment buildings in Brazil are becoming the norm in this popular summer beach resort. Santa Catarina was one of the few states in Brazil, populated by a settlement program of immigrants coming from every European nation in the 1800s when Brazil had a strong policy of allowing immigrants from Northern Europe to settle in areas of the country that the government at the time deemed in need of settlers. People of German and Austrian descent make up the largest ethnic group among the population of Santa Catarina, at around 50% - with a considerable portion still speaking the German language. Speakers of Venetian Italian make up the third most spoken mother tongue, after Portuguese and assorted German dialects; the state's social indicators are among the best in Latin America, being the Brazilian state with the third highest level of median income, besides exhibiting high levels of education and public health, one of the lowest rates of illiteracy.
Santa Catarina boasts Brazil's highest average life expectancy and lowest homicide rate in addition to lower levels of corruption. The cities of the state are considered some of the most livable in the country, enjoying a reputation of being "clean and organized". Despite the high standard of living, unemployment is still high and according to data census it's one of the most difficult states in Brazil for foreigners finding jobs. Santa Catarina is in a strategic position in Mercosul, the South American Common Market, its position in the map is situated between the parallel 25º57'41" and 29º23'55" of the Southern latitude and between the meridians 48º19'37" and 53º50'00" of Western longitude. Florianópolis, its capital, is 1,673 km from Brasilia, 705 km from São Paulo, 1,144 km from Rio de Janeiro and 1,850 km from Buenos Aires; the Serra Geral, a southern extension of the Serra do Mar, runs north and south through the state parallel to the Atlantic coast, dividing the state between a narrow coastal plain and a larger plateau region to the west.
The Atlantic coast of Santa Catarina has many beaches, bays and lagoons. The humid tropical Serra do Mar coastal forests cover the narrow coastal zone, crossed by numerous short streams from the wooded slopes of the serras; the central part of the state is home to the Araucaria moist forests, dominated by emergent Brazilian pines. The drainage of the plateau is westward to the Paraná River, the rivers being tributaries of the Iguaçu, which forms its northern boundary, of the Uruguay River, which forms its southern boundary; the semi-deciduous Paraná-Paraíba interior forests occupy the westernmost valleys of the Iguaçu and Uruguay rivers. The highest point of the state is the Morro da Boa Vista, with an altitude of 1,827 m, the second highest point is the Morro da Igreja, in the town of Urubici, with an altitude of 1,822 m. See also: History of Santa Catarina European settlement began with the Spanish settlement of Santa Catarina island in 1542; the Portuguese took control in 1675 and established the captaincy of Santa Catarina in 1738, bringing families from the Azores to populate the shore.
Protected areas of Brazil
Protected areas of Brazil included various classes of area according to the National System of Conservation Units, a formal, unified system for federal and municipal parks created in 2000. Protected areas called conservation units, are divided into different categories according to their goals; these are defined by Law No. 9.985 of 18 July 2000, which established the National System of Conservation Units. Objectives include conservation of nature, sustainable development, scientific research and eco-tourism, Fully protected units are expected to maintain the natural ecosystem without human interference. Sustainable use units allow sustained use of renewable environmental resources while maintaining biodiversity and other ecological attributes; the Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation, which administers Federal units, defines the protected classes of unit as: Ecological stations Biological reserves National parks, State parks and Municipal nature parks Natural monuments Wildlife refuges The sustainable use units are: Environmental protection areas Areas of relevant ecological interest National forests and State forests Extractive reserves Wildlife reserves Sustainable development reserves Private natural heritage reserves In addition, some states designate areas as ecological reserve.
Although not technically protected areas, indigenous territories give the indigenous people full rights over the area, serve as an obstacle to deforestation and large-scale agriculture. As of 2016 there were 700 Indigenous Territories in Brazil, covering about 13.8%% of the country's land area. Most of them were in the Amazon Legal; the SNUC law defines a protected area mosaic as a collection of protected areas of the same or different categories that are near to each other, adjoining each other or overlapping, that should be managed as a whole. Given the different categories of conservation unit and other protected areas in a mosaic, the different conservation goals must be considered. In addition to protected and sustainable use conservation units a mosaic may include private lands and indigenous territories; the SNUC law recognises ecological corridors as portions of natural or semi-natural ecosystems linking protected areas that allow gene flow and movement of biota, recolonization of degraded areas and maintenance of viable populations larger than would be possible with individual units.
The federal Ecological Corridor Project has its roots at least as far back as 1993. It has identified seven major corridors, with focus on implementing and learning from the Central Amazon Corridor and the Central Atlantic Forest Corridor; as of 2004 federally-administered conservation units covered 7.23% of Brazilian territory, below the level of 10% recommended by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Federal coverage was: Levels of protection vary depending on the biome. Federal coverage as of 2005 was: Protected areas are subject to reduction, reclassification or declassification. Between 1981 and 2010 an area of 45,000,000 hectares was downgraded or lost in this way, with 70% of cases occurring since 2008; the main cause was making land available for hydroelectric dams in the Amazon region. Other reasons were agribusiness. List of ecoregions in Brazil
Military dictatorship in Brazil
The Brazilian military government was the authoritarian military dictatorship that ruled Brazil from April 1, 1964 to March 15, 1985. It began with the 1964 coup d'état led by the Armed Forces against the administration of President João Goulart—who, having been vice-president, had assumed the office of president upon the resignation of the democratically elected president Jânio Quadros—and ended when José Sarney took office on March 15, 1985 as President; the military revolt was fomented by Magalhães Pinto, Adhemar de Barros, Carlos Lacerda, governors of Minas Gerais, São Paulo, Guanabara. The coup was supported by the State Department of the United States through its embassy; the military dictatorship lasted for twenty-one years. The regime adopted nationalism, economic development, anti-communism as its guidelines; the dictatorship reached the height of its popularity in the 1970s with the so-called "Brazilian Miracle" as the regime censored all media, tortured and exiled dissidents. João Figueiredo became President in March 1979.
While combating the "hardline" members of the regime and supporting a re-democratization policy, he couldn't control the crumbling economy, chronic inflation and concurrent fall of other military dictatorships in South America. Amid massive popular demonstrations in the streets of the main cities of the country, the first free elections in 20 years were held for the national legislature in 1982. In 1985, another election was held, this time to elect a new president, being contested between civilian candidates for the first time since the 1960s, won by the opposition. In 1988, a new Constitution was passed and Brazil returned to democracy. Since the military has remained under the control of civilian politicians, with no official role in domestic politics. Brazil's military regime provided a model for other military regimes and dictatorships around Latin America, systematizing the “Doctrine of National Security”, which "justified" the military's actions as operating in the interest of national security in a time of crisis, creating an intellectual basis upon which other military regimes relied.
In 2014, nearly 30 years after the regime collapsed, the Brazilian military recognized for the first time the excesses committed by its agents during the years of the dictatorship, including the torture and murder of political dissidents. In May 2018, the United States government released a memorandum, written by Henry Kissinger, dating back to April 1974, confirming that the leadership of the Brazilian military regime was aware of the killing of dissidents, it is estimated that 434 people were either confirmed killed or went missing during the military dictatorship in Brazil. While some human rights activists and others assert that the true figure could be much higher, the armed forces have always disputed this. Brazil's political crisis stemmed from the way in which the political tensions had been controlled in the 1930s and 1940s during the Vargas Era. Vargas' dictatorship and the presidencies of his democratic successors marked different stages of Brazilian populism, an era of economic nationalism, state-guided modernization, import substitution trade policies.
Vargas' policies were intended to foster an autonomous capitalist development in Brazil, by linking industrialization to nationalism, a formula based on a strategy of reconciling the conflicting interests of the middle class, foreign capital, the working class, the landed oligarchy. This was the epic of the rise and fall of Brazilian populism from 1930 to 1964: Brazil witnessed over the course of this time period the change from export-orientation of the First Brazilian Republic to the import substitution of the populist era and to a moderate structuralism of 1964–80; each of these structural changes forced a realignment in society and caused a period of political crisis. Period of right-wing military dictatorship marked the transition between populist era and the current period of democratization; the Brazilian Armed Forces acquired great political clout after the Paraguayan War. The politicization of the Armed Forces was evidenced by the Proclamation of the Republic, which overthrew the Empire, or within Tenentismo and the Revolution of 1930.
Tensions escalated again in the 1950s, as important military circles joined the elite, medium classes and right-wing activists in attempts to stop Presidents Juscelino Kubitschek and João Goulart from taking office, due to their supposed support for Communist ideology. While Kubitschek proved to be friendly to capitalist institutions, Goulart promised far-reaching reforms, expropriated business interests and promoted economical-political neutrality with the USA. After Goulart assumed power in 1961, society became polarized, with the elites fearing that Brazil would become another Cuba and join Communist Bloc, while many thought that the reforms would boost the growth of Brazil and end its economical subservience with the US, or that Goulart could be used to increase the popularity of the Communist agenda. Influential politicians, such as Carlos Lacerda and Kubitschek, media moguls, the Church, l
Colonial Brazil comprises the period from 1500, with the arrival of the Portuguese, until 1815, when Brazil was elevated to a kingdom in union with Portugal as the United Kingdom of Portugal and the Algarves. During the early 300 years of Brazilian colonial history, the economic exploitation of the territory was based first on brazilwood extraction, which gave the territory its name. Slaves those brought from Africa, provided most of the work force of the Brazilian export economy after a brief period of Indian slavery to cut brazilwood. In contrast to the neighboring Spanish possessions, which had several viceroyalties with jurisdiction over New Spain and Peru, in the eighteenth century expanded to viceroyalties of Rio de la Plata and New Granada, the Portuguese colony of Brazil was settled in the coastal area by the Portuguese and a large black slave population working sugar plantations and mines; the boom and bust economic cycles were linked to export products. Brazil's sugar age, with the development of plantation slavery, merchants serving as middle men between production sites, Brazilian ports, Europe was undermined by the growth of the sugar industry in the Caribbean on islands that European powers seized from Spain.
Gold and diamonds were mined in southern Brazil through the end of the colonial era. Brazilian cities were port cities and the colonial administrative capital was moved several times in response to the rise and fall of export products' importance. Unlike Spanish America, which fragmented into many republics upon independence, Brazil remained a single administrative unit under a monarch, giving rise to the largest country in Latin America. Just as European Spanish and Roman Catholicism were a core source of cohesion among Spain's vast and multi-ethnic territories, Brazilian society was united by the Portuguese language and Roman Catholic faith; as the only Lusophone polity in the Western Hemisphere, the Portuguese language was important to Brazilian identity. Portugal and Spain pioneered the European charting of sea routes that were the first and only channels of interaction between all of the world's continents, thus beginning the process of globalization. In addition to the imperial and economic undertaking of discovery and colonization of lands distant from Europe, these years were filled with pronounced advancements in cartography and navigational instruments, of which the Portuguese and Spanish explorers took advantage.
In 1494, the two kingdoms of the Iberian Peninsula divided the New World between them, in 1500 navigator Pedro Álvares Cabral landed in what is now Brazil and laid claim to it in the name of King Manuel I of Portugal. The Portuguese identified brazilwood as a valuable red dye and an exploitable product, attempted to force indigenous groups in Brazil to cut the trees. Portuguese seafarers in the early fifteenth century began to expand from a small area of the Iberian Peninsula, to seizing the Muslim fortress of Ceuta in North Africa, its maritime exploration proceeded down the coast of West Africa and across the Indian Ocean to the south Asian subcontinent, as well as the Atlantic islands off the coast of Africa on the way. They sought sources of gold and African slaves, high value goods in the African trade; the Portuguese set up fortified trading "factories", whereby permanent small commercial settlements anchored trade in a region. The initial costs of setting up these commercial posts was borne by private investors, who in turn received hereditary titles and commercial advantages.
From the Portuguese Crown's point of view, its realm was expanded with little cost to itself. On the Atlantic islands of the Azores, Sāo Tomé, the Portuguese began plantation production of sugarcane using forced labor, a precedent for Brazil's sugar production in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries; the Portuguese "discovery" of Brazil was preceded by a series of treaties between the kings of Portugal and Castile, following Portuguese sailings down the coast of Africa to India and the voyages to the Caribbean of the Genoese mariner sailing for Castile, Christopher Columbus. The most decisive of these treaties was the Treaty of Tordesillas, signed in 1494, which created the Tordesillas Meridian, dividing the world between the two kingdoms. All land discovered or to be discovered east of that meridian was to be the property of Portugal, everything to the west of it went to Spain; the Tordesillas Meridian divided South America into two parts, leaving a large chunk of land to be exploited by the Spaniards.
The Treaty of Tordesillas was arguably the most decisive event in all Brazilian history, since it determined that part of South America would be settled by Portugal instead of Spain. The present extent of Brazil's coastline is exactly that defined by the Treaty of Madrid, approved in 1750. On April 22, 1500, during the reign of King Manuel I, a fleet led by navigator Pedro Álvares Cabral landed in Brazil and took possession of the land in the name of the king. Although it is debated whether previous Portuguese explorers had been in Brazil, this date is and politically accepted as the day of the discovery of Brazil by Europeans. Álvares Cabral was leading a large fleet of 13 ships and more than 1000 men following Vasco da Gama's way to India, around Africa. The place where Álvares Cabral arrived is now known in Northeastern Brazil. After the voyage of Álvares Cabral, the Portuguese concentrated their efforts on the lucrative possessions in Africa and India
Ceará is one of the 27 states of Brazil, located in the northeastern part of the country, on the Atlantic coast. It is the eighth-largest Brazilian State by the 17th by area, it is one of the main tourist destinations in Brazil. The state capital is the city of the country's fourth most populous city; the name Ceará means "sings the jandaia". According to José de Alencar, one of the most important writers of Brazil and an authority in Tupi Guaraní, Ceará means turquoise or green waters. There are theories that the state name would derive from Siriará, a reference to the crabs from the seashore; the state is best known with 600 kilometers of sand. There are mountains and valleys producing tropical fruits. To the south, on the border of Paraíba, Pernambuco and Piauí, is the National Forest of Araripe. Ceará has an area of 148,016 square kilometres, it is bounded on the north by the Atlantic Ocean, on the east by the states of Rio Grande do Norte and Paraíba, on the south by Pernambuco state, on the west by Piauí.
Ceará lies upon the northeast slope of the Brazilian Highlands, upon the sandy coastal plain. Its surface is a succession of great terraces, facing north and northeast, formed by the denudation of the ancient sandstone plateau which once covered this part of the continent; the latter are the remains of the ancient plateau, capped with horizontal strata of sandstone, with a uniform altitude of 2,000 to 2,400 feet. The flat top of such a range is called a chapada or taboleira, its width in places is from 32 to 56 miles; the boundary line with Piauí follows one of these ranges, the Serra de Ibiapaba, which unites with another range on the southern boundary of the state, known as the Serra do Araripe. Another range, or escarpment, crosses the state from east to west, but is broken into two principal divisions, each having several local names; these ranges are not continuous, the breaking down of the ancient plateau having been irregular and uneven. The rivers of the state are small and, with one or two exceptions, become dry in the dry season.
The largest is the Jaguaribe, which flows across the state in a northeast direction. Ceará has a varied environment, with mangroves, jungle and tropical forest; the higher ranges intercept considerable moisture from the prevailing trade winds, their flanks and valleys are covered with a tropical forest, typical of the region, gathering species from tropical forests and cerrado. The less elevated areas of the plateaus are either thinly open campo. Most of the region at the lower altitudes is characterized by scrubby forests called caatingas, an endemic Brazilian vegetation; the sandy, coastal plain, with a width of 12 to 18 miles, is nearly bare of vegetation, although the coast has many enclaves of restingas and mangroves. The soil is, in general and porous and does not retain moisture; some areas in the higher ranges of Serra da Ibiapaba, Serra do Araripe and others are more appropriate for agriculture, as their soil and vegetation are less affected by the dry seasons. The beaches of the state is a major tourist attraction.
Ceará has several famous beaches such as Canoa Quebrada, Morro Branco, Taíba and Flexeiras. The beaches are divided into two groups: Sunrise Coast. Ceará lies in one of the few regions of the country. In 1980 an earthquake measuring 5.8 on the Richter scale struck near Quixeramobim in the center of the state, rattling the city of Fortaleza but causing no injuries. The climate of Ceará is hot all year; the temperature in the state varies from 22 to 36 °C. The coast is humid, tempered by the cool trade winds. In the higher ranges the temperatures are cooler and vary from about 14 to 18 °C; the record minimum temperature registered in Ceará was 8 °C, recorded in Jardim, a small city in Chapada do Araripe. The year is divided into a rainy and dry season, the rains beginning in January to March and lasting until June; the dry season, July to December, is sometimes broken by slight showers in September and October, but these are of slight importance. Sometimes the rains fail altogether, a drought ensues, causing famine and pestilence throughout the entire region.
The most destructive droughts recorded in the 18th and 19th centuries were those of 1711, 1723, 1777–1778, 1790, 1825, 1844–1845, 1877 to 1878, the last-mentioned destroying nearly all the livestock in the state, causing the death through starvation and pestilence of nearly half a million people, or over half the population. Because of the constant risk of droughts, many dams have been built throughout Ceará, the largest of them the Açude Castanhão; because of the dams, the Jaguaribe River no longer dries up completely. The t
Brazil the Federative Republic of Brazil, is the largest country in both South America and Latin America. At 8.5 million square kilometers and with over 208 million people, Brazil is the world's fifth-largest country by area and the fifth most populous. Its capital is Brasília, its most populated city is São Paulo; the federation is composed of the union of the 26 states, the Federal District, the 5,570 municipalities. It is the largest country to have Portuguese as an official language and the only one in the Americas. Bounded by the Atlantic Ocean on the east, Brazil has a coastline of 7,491 kilometers, it borders all other South American countries except Ecuador and Chile and covers 47.3% of the continent's land area. Its Amazon River basin includes a vast tropical forest, home to diverse wildlife, a variety of ecological systems, extensive natural resources spanning numerous protected habitats; this unique environmental heritage makes Brazil one of 17 megadiverse countries, is the subject of significant global interest and debate regarding deforestation and environmental protection.
Brazil was inhabited by numerous tribal nations prior to the landing in 1500 of explorer Pedro Álvares Cabral, who claimed the area for the Portuguese Empire. Brazil remained a Portuguese colony until 1808, when the capital of the empire was transferred from Lisbon to Rio de Janeiro. In 1815, the colony was elevated to the rank of kingdom upon the formation of the United Kingdom of Portugal and the Algarves. Independence was achieved in 1822 with the creation of the Empire of Brazil, a unitary state governed under a constitutional monarchy and a parliamentary system; the ratification of the first constitution in 1824 led to the formation of a bicameral legislature, now called the National Congress. The country became a presidential republic in 1889 following a military coup d'état. An authoritarian military junta came to power in 1964 and ruled until 1985, after which civilian governance resumed. Brazil's current constitution, formulated in 1988, defines it as a democratic federal republic. Due to its rich culture and history, the country ranks thirteenth in the world by number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Brazil is considered an advanced emerging economy. It has the ninth largest GDP in the world by nominal, eight and PPP measures, it is one of the world's major breadbaskets, being the largest producer of coffee for the last 150 years. It is classified as an upper-middle income economy by the World Bank and a newly industrialized country, with the largest share of global wealth in Latin America. Brazil is a regional power and sometimes considered a great or a middle power in international affairs. On account of its international recognition and influence, the country is subsequently classified as an emerging power and a potential superpower by several analysts. Brazil is a founding member of the United Nations, the G20, BRICS, Union of South American Nations, Organization of American States, Organization of Ibero-American States and the Community of Portuguese Language Countries, it is that the word "Brazil" comes from the Portuguese word for brazilwood, a tree that once grew plentifully along the Brazilian coast.
In Portuguese, brazilwood is called pau-brasil, with the word brasil given the etymology "red like an ember", formed from brasa and the suffix -il. As brazilwood produces a deep red dye, it was valued by the European textile industry and was the earliest commercially exploited product from Brazil. Throughout the 16th century, massive amounts of brazilwood were harvested by indigenous peoples along the Brazilian coast, who sold the timber to European traders in return for assorted European consumer goods; the official Portuguese name of the land, in original Portuguese records, was the "Land of the Holy Cross", but European sailors and merchants called it the "Land of Brazil" because of the brazilwood trade. The popular appellation eclipsed and supplanted the official Portuguese name; some early sailors called it the "Land of Parrots". In the Guarani language, an official language of Paraguay, Brazil is called "Pindorama"; this was the name the indigenous population gave to the region, meaning "land of the palm trees".
Some of the earliest human remains found in the Americas, Luzia Woman, were found in the area of Pedro Leopoldo, Minas Gerais and provide evidence of human habitation going back at least 11,000 years. The earliest pottery found in the Western Hemisphere was excavated in the Amazon basin of Brazil and radiocarbon dated to 8,000 years ago; the pottery was found near Santarém and provides evidence that the tropical forest region supported a complex prehistoric culture. The Marajoara culture flourished on Marajó in the Amazon delta from 800 CE to 1400 CE, developing sophisticated pottery, social stratification, large populations, mound building, complex social formations such as chiefdoms. Around the time of the Portuguese arrival, the territory of current day Brazil had an estimated indigenous population of 7 million people semi-nomadic who subsisted on hunting, fishing and migrant agriculture; the indigenous population of Brazil comprised several large indigenous ethnic groups. The Tupí people were subdivided into the Tupiniquins and Tupinambás, there were many subdivisions of the other gro
Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro, or Rio, is anchor to the Rio de Janeiro metropolitan area and the second-most populous municipality in Brazil and the sixth-most populous in the Americas. Rio de Janeiro is the capital of the state of Brazil's third-most populous state. Part of the city has been designated as a World Heritage Site, named "Rio de Janeiro: Carioca Landscapes between the Mountain and the Sea", by UNESCO on 1 July 2012 as a Cultural Landscape. Founded in 1565 by the Portuguese, the city was the seat of the Captaincy of Rio de Janeiro, a domain of the Portuguese Empire. In 1763, it became the capital of the State of Brazil, a state of the Portuguese Empire. In 1808, when the Portuguese Royal Court transferred itself from Portugal to Brazil, Rio de Janeiro became the chosen seat of the court of Queen Maria I of Portugal, who subsequently, in 1815, under the leadership of her son, the Prince Regent, future King João VI of Portugal, raised Brazil to the dignity of a kingdom, within the United Kingdom of Portugal and Algarves.
Rio stayed the capital of the pluricontinental Lusitanian monarchy until 1822, when the War of Brazilian Independence began. This is one of the few instances in history that the capital of a colonising country shifted to a city in one of its colonies. Rio de Janeiro subsequently served as the capital of the independent monarchy, the Empire of Brazil, until 1889, the capital of a republican Brazil until 1960 when the capital was transferred to Brasília. Rio de Janeiro has the second largest municipal GDP in the country, 30th largest in the world in 2008, estimated at about R$343 billion, it is headquarters to Brazilian oil and telecommunications companies, including two of the country's major corporations – Petrobras and Vale – and Latin America's largest telemedia conglomerate, Grupo Globo. The home of many universities and institutes, it is the second-largest center of research and development in Brazil, accounting for 17% of national scientific output according to 2005 data. Despite the high perception of crime, the city has a lower incidence of crime than Northeast Brazil, but it is far more criminalized than the south region of Brazil, considered the safest in the country.
Rio de Janeiro is one of the most visited cities in the Southern Hemisphere and is known for its natural settings, samba, bossa nova, balneario beaches such as Barra da Tijuca, Copacabana and Leblon. In addition to the beaches, some of the most famous landmarks include the giant statue of Christ the Redeemer atop Corcovado mountain, named one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Rio de Janeiro was the host of the 2016 Summer Olympics and the 2016 Summer Paralympics, making the city the first South American and Portuguese-speaking city to host the events, the third time the Olympics were held in a Southern Hemisphere city; the Maracanã Stadium held the finals of the 1950 and 2014 FIFA World Cups, the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup, the XV Pan American Games. Europeans first encountered Guanabara Bay on 1 January 1502, by a Portuguese expedition under explorer Gaspar de Lemos, captain of a ship in Pedro Álvares Cabral's fleet, or under Gonçalo Coelho; the Florentine explorer Amerigo Vespucci participated as observer at the invitation of King Manuel I in the same expedition.
The region of Rio was inhabited by the Tupi, Puri and Maxakalí peoples. In 1555, one of the islands of Guanabara Bay, now called Villegagnon Island, was occupied by 500 French colonists under the French admiral Nicolas Durand de Villegaignon. Villegagnon built Fort Coligny on the island when attempting to establish the France Antarctique colony; the city of Rio de Janeiro proper was founded by the Portuguese on 1 March 1565 and was named São Sebastião do Rio de Janeiro, in honour of St. Sebastian, the saint, the namesake and patron of the Portuguese then-monarch Sebastião. Rio de Janeiro was the name of Guanabara Bay; until early in the 18th century, the city was threatened or invaded by several French pirates and buccaneers, such as Jean-François Duclerc and René Duguay-Trouin. In the late 17th century, still during the Sugar Era, the Bandeirantes discovered gold and diamonds in the neighbouring captaincy of Minas Gerais, thus Rio de Janeiro became a much more practical port for exporting wealth than Salvador, much farther northeast.
On 27 January 1763, the colonial administration in Portuguese America was moved from Salvador to Rio de Janeiro. The city remained a colonial capital until 1808, when the Portuguese royal family and most of the associated Lisbon nobles, fleeing from Napoleon's invasion of Portugal, moved to Rio de Janeiro; the kingdom's capital was transferred to the city, thus, became the only European capital outside of Europe. As there was no physical space or urban structure to accommodate hundreds of noblemen who arrived many inhabitants were evicted from their homes. In the first decades, several educational establishments were created, such as the Military Academy, the Royal School of Sciences and Crafts and the Imperial Academy of Fine Arts, as well as the National Library of Brazil – with the largest collection in Latin America – and The Botanical Garden; the first printed newspaper in Brazil, the Gazeta do Rio de Janeiro, came into circulation during this period. When Brazil was elevated to Kingdom in 1815, it