To what extent is Brazil a country of the South?
It is very difficult to look at Brazil as a true country of the South today. Today, Brazil is generally seen as one of the "BRIC" countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China) that are coming to have the sort of economic clout commensurate with their size. However, Brazil is also not firmly in the North as it is not yet a rich country. The rise of countries like the BRIC countries may point to the need for a better system of classifying countries.
Let us look at some development statistics for Brazil:
- It has a GDP per capita of $11,600. This is well below the figure for poorer North countries such as Italy ($30,100) but far above truly South countries like Bangladesh ($1700) or Burundi ($500).
- Its maternal mortality rate is 58 per 100,000 live births. This is miles below a true South country like Burundi (970) but far above that of Italy (5.0).
It is hard, then, to see Brazil as a country of the North or of the South.
I think it's important to recognise the huge differences within Brazil itself as well. Cities in the south-east such as Sao Paulo or Curitiba are much, much closer to the 'North' countries by almost any index, whereas rural Amazonia, or even cities in the north-east can almost feel like a different country.