More information about Brazil is available on the Brazil Country Page and from other Department of State publications and other sources listed at the end of this fact sheet.
The United States and Brazil enjoy robust political and economic relations. The United States was the first country to recognize Brazil’s independence in 1822. As two of the largest democracies and economies in the Western Hemisphere, the United States and Brazil have a partnership that is rooted in a shared commitment to expand economic growth and prosperity; promote international peace, security, and respect for human rights; and strengthen defense and security cooperation.
U.S.-Brazil Bilateral Economic Relations
Brazil is the world’s twelfth-largest economy and the United States is Brazil’s second-largest trading partner. Two-way trade in goods and services was $104.3 billion ($66.9 billion in goods and $37.4 billion in services) in 2019, but declined to $77.3 billion during the pandemic in 2020. In 2020, the United States had an overall trade surplus of $21.4 billion for goods and services, including an $11.2 billion trade surplus for goods alone. Brazil’s main imports from the United States are aircraft, machinery, petroleum products, electronics, and optical and medical instruments. The United States is Brazil’s second-largest export market. The primary products are crude oil, aircraft, iron and steel, and machinery. The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis counted $70.7 billion of U.S. direct investment in Brazil as of 2020 on a historical cost basis; the Brazil Central Bank measured the total at $145.1 billion as of 2019.
The United States welcomed more than 1.9 million visitors from Brazil in 2017, comprising the eighth-largest group of visitors. There were approximately 475,000 U.S. visitors to Brazil in 2017, comprising the second-largest source of visitors to Brazil. Since June 2019, U.S. citizens may enter Brazil for tourism without a visa.
The United States and Brazil conduct regular exchanges on trade facilitation, good regulatory practices, and standards. In October 2020, the United States and Brazil signed new protocol updating the 2011 Agreement on Trade and Economic Cooperation to adding state-of-the-art provisions on Customs Administration and Trade Facilitation, Good Regulatory Practices, and Anticorruption. The Energy Dialogue, Commercial Dialogue, and CEO Forum bring cabinet officials and private sector leaders together to coordinate policy measures that can facilitate better economic relations, and regular exchanges at the working level between U.S. and Brazilian economic departments, ministries, and agencies take place throughout the year.
The United States has ongoing collaboration with Brazilian partners, the government, and the private sector to support COVID-19 response efforts. As the two largest democracies and economies in the hemisphere, we are working together to address the most urgent global and regional challenges of the 21st century. The United States and Brazil are closely coordinating to combat the global pandemic, building upon decades of scientific and health cooperation. The United States has provided more than $16.9 million in direct U.S. government and more than $75 million in U.S. private sector support for efforts to fight COVID-19 in Brazil in 2020 and 2021, in addition to donating three million doses of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine in June 2021.
In 2020, USAID donated 1,000 ventilators to Brazil, and provided over $9.5 million in support to Brazil’s COVID-19 response, leveraging private sector investments of more than $3.5 million. Activities included risk communication and community engagement, infection prevention and control, water and sanitation, microcredit, and social safety net support, such as food and hygiene kits to remote communities in the Amazon region.
U.S.-Brazil Climate Engagement
Brazil is one of the largest emitters of greenhouse gases in the world. It also holds within its borders more than 60% of the Amazon forest – a globally-critical carbon sink. The United States currently provides technical and financial support to a variety of stakeholders in the country to help conserve and better manage forests, address forest fires, support livelihoods that are consistent with climate ambition and ecosystem conservation, and improve the clean energy matrix. The United States and Brazil are engaged in ongoing technical discussions to identify opportunities to enhance the ambition of climate action – especially through reducing deforestation. President Bolsonaro has committed to reaching net zero emissions by 2050 and eliminating illegal deforestation by 2030. Implementing effective strategies to conserve and enhance forests, address other major sources of emissions from agriculture and energy, and enhance the resilience of communities would help put Brazil on a pathway to meet these commitments.
U.S.-Brazil Education and Cultural Cooperation
The United States and Brazil have a long history of deepening people-to-people ties through investment and exchanges in education, culture, energy, health, agriculture, science and technology, English language training, and innovation.
More than 40,000 youth, students, scholars, teachers, and professionals have participated in exchanges between the United States and Brazil. Arts exchanges are rooted in creative collaboration, education, and professional development across genres. The bi-national Fulbright Commission (established in 1957) supports studying, teaching, and research exchanges, with over 7,000 alumni since its inception. English teaching and learning capacity building continues through a variety of projects with public and private educational institutions across the country. 42 Education USA centers help Brazilian university students access information and opportunities to study in the United States.
In 2020, the United States launched the Academy for Women Entrepreneurs (AWE) to support female business owners. In 2022, the flagship Youth Ambassadors exchange program will celebrate its twentieth year of connecting Brazilian and American youth leaders. Since 2002, there have been 760 Youth Ambassadors from Brazil and the program has expanded to 27 countries, including the United States, which has sent 152 Youth Ambassadors to Brazil. The Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative empowers emerging Brazilian entrepreneurs through an annual fellowship, active online network, and activities organized by the U.S. Embassy and Consulates.
Professional exchanges also include short-term visits for current and emerging Brazilian leaders in a variety of fields through the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). The network of 32 American Spaces provides a platform for public diplomacy programming on key foreign policy priorities including promoting entrepreneurship, STEM education, rule of law and economic tries. In 2020, the Office of the U.S. Speaker Program conducted fourteen virtual programs to advance the policy priorities of women’s leadership, STEAM education, climate change, press freedom, LGBTI+ rights, and U.S.-China trade. The two countries maintain extensive scientific exchanges at the individual researcher level, as well as bilateral collaborations with the U.S. Geological Survey, NASA, Environmental Protection Agency, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Science Foundation, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Smithsonian Institution, Department of Energy, and National Institute of Standards and Technology. The two nations collaborate in weather monitoring, meteorology and standards, environmental impact monitoring, and an extensive range of public health efforts. Brazil is also home to the U.S. National Institute of Health’s (NIH) largest research portfolio in Latin America. This work is supported by our bilateral agreement on science and technology cooperation and was recently highlighted by Presidents Trump and Bolsonaro during their March 2020 meeting.
The United States-Brazil Joint Action Plan, signed in 2008 aims to Eliminate Racial and Ethnic Discrimination and Promote Equality (JAPER). The education pillar of JAPER contributed to the U.S.-Brazil Memorandum of Understanding Higher Education, Science, and Research with Historically Black Colleges and Universities. In March 2019, the State Department launched an Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) grant to restore and preserve the early 19th-century Valongo Wharf archaeological site in Rio de Janeiro. This project advances JAPER by ensuring the appropriate infrastructure for public visits to the wharf and educational outreach on the history and modern-day contributions of African descendants in Brazil.
U.S.-Brazil Technology and Defense Cooperation
The United States and Brazil work together on key global, multilateral, and regional issues. Brazil’s national space agency, AEB, is a member of NASA’s Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) program, with 119 Brazilian schools participating in projects such as the GLOBE Mosquito Habitat Mapper (MHM) app that connects to the GLOBE database to help track mosquitoes that spread Zika and other diseases.
In 2019, the Brazilian Congress ratified the Technology Safeguards Agreement, which will guarantee that U.S. sensitive technologies are protected from unauthorized uses and will establish the safeguards to support the launch of U.S.-licensed satellites or space launch vehicles from the Alcantara Space Center in Brazil. This agreement has the potential to open new commercial opportunities for Americans and Brazilians in a range of advanced technologies related to space, including satellites. The visit also led to an agreement between NASA and the Brazilian Space Agency to launch a jointly developed research satellite in the near future. In 2021 Brazil signed the Artemis accords, becoming the first South America country to partner with the United States in the program that establishes a common vision for governance in the civil exploration and use of outer space and aims to land the first woman and the first person of color on the surface of the Moon.
The United States and Brazil are strengthening cooperation on defense issues, including research and development, technology security, and the acquisition and development of products and services. Under the umbrella of the U.S-Brazil Defense Cooperation Agreement, which entered into force in 2015, a range of security cooperation agreements and initiatives promote joint exercises and facilitate the sharing of sophisticated capabilities and technologies. The third iteration of the U.S.-Brazil Defense Industry Dialogue took place in Rio de Janeiro in April 2019. This ongoing, public-private dialogue has generated important results and spurred numerous industry collaborations since its launch in 2016. Brazil became a Major Non-NATO Ally of the United States in July 2019.
U.S. Assistance to Brazil
The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs (OES) and Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), U.S. Department of Justice, and U.S. Forest Service, and other partners provide law enforcement and investigation training for Brazilian counterparts to support their efforts to combat wildlife trafficking, illegal logging, and other conservation crimes.
The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) engages in a long-standing bilateral partnership with the Government of Brazil across several joint priorities, including biodiversity conservation in the Amazon, trilateral technical assistance for other countries in targeted areas, and technical assistance for private sector partnerships to promote best practices and resources to stimulate development solutions for the conservation of biodiversity and sustainable socioeconomic livelihoods of the Amazon. In addition to these lines of effort, in response to the Venezuela regional crisis, USAID’s regional mission in Peru provides medium-to-long-term assistance to Brazil, Ecuador, and Peru to improve and facilitate the economic integration of Venezuelan migrants and refugees in major receptor communities in Peru, Ecuador and Brazil.
- The Partnership for Conservation of Amazon Biodiversity (PCAB) is a multi-year (2016-2030), $130 million bilateral agreement with the Brazilian Cooperation Agency (ABC), the Ministry of Environment (MMA), the Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation (ICMBio), and the National Indigenous Foundation (FUNAI). The purpose of the partnership is to strengthen Brazil’s vast protected area systems, including indigenous territories, to support sustainable forest-friendly value chains, and to foster private sector leadership and engagement in joint solutions.
- USAID works with Brazilian partners to advance innovative financing solutions for hard-to-reach forest and biodiversity-supportive businesses, and facilitate private-sector led collective action platforms, such as the Partnership Platform for the Amazon (PPA), which includes 20+ companies (a mix of Brazilian, American and international companies) that is generating private sector and market-led sustainable economic solutions designed to reduce deforestation, conserve biodiversity and improve community well-being.
- Mais Unidos has brought together U.S. companies that invest in science, technology, entrepreneurship, and English language training for Brazilian youth over the last ten years.
In March 2019, USAID and Brazil’s Ministry of Environment signed a Letter of Intent to facilitate the first-ever biodiversity-focused impact-investment fund for the Brazilian Amazon that intends to mobilize $65 million in private sector financing for equity and loan investments for sustainable business ventures aligned with forest and biodiversity conservation.
USAID and the Government of Brazil work together to promote development in other countries, particularly in Africa and Latin America, through trilateral technical assistance. USAID and the Government of Brazil have implemented trilateral food security programs to increase agricultural productivity, improve food security, and address school nutrition in Honduras, Haiti, and Mozambique, and have teamed up to address the Fall armyworm outbreak across Sub-Saharan Africa.
In November 2020 Senior officials from Japan, the United States, and Brazil launched the Japan-U.S.-Brazil Exchange (JUSBE). Building upon the three countries’ traditional ties based on common values of freedom, human rights, democracy, and the rule of law, they aspire to a free and open international order where countries prosper side-by-side as sovereign and independent states. Through the dialogue, officials from the three countries identified three pillars as the basis of JUSBE: strengthening policy coordination on regional issues, pursuing shared economic prosperity, and fortifying democratic governance. Noting that JUSBE is a results-oriented partnership, various concrete achievements were discussed under these pillars.
Brazil’s Membership in International Organizations
Brazil and the United States belong to a number of the same international organizations, including the United Nations, Organization of American States, Inter-American Development Bank, G-20, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and the World Trade Organization. Brazil traditionally has been a leader in the inter-American community, and is a member of the sub-regional MERCOSUR and PROSUR groups.
Principal U.S. embassy officials are listed in the Department’s Key Officers List.
More information about Brazil is available from the Department of State and other sources, some of which are listed here: