Since first becoming a BRIC country in 2001, Brazil has been a magnet for companies wishing to invest in this growing economy. Although the past few years have been riddled with a slowing economy, political unrest and calls for riots and protests to better protect the country’s impoverished population, Brazil is still a growing destination for global mobility activity.
Brazil has the potential to be an assignee’s dream destination. With beautiful beaches, a bustling economy and a contagious atmosphere of excitement and intrigue, the country has much to offer. Now, with the countdown on for the 2016 summer Olympics held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil will again be thrust into the spotlight.
From August 5 through August 21, Rio de Janeiro will host events at 33 venues. An additional five venues in the cities of São Paulo, Belo Horizonte, Salvador, Brasília (Brazil's capital) and Manaus will also see Olympic action. With an estimated 7.5 million tickets to be sold, heavy traffic congestion and safety concerns will be an issue. While this exciting event will bring hundreds of thousands of visitors to the area, a factor that will certainly affect anyone with relocation or mobility plans, Brazil has other hurdles impacting both travelers and assignees.
Global mobility experts and their assignees (and anyone visiting Rio!) also need to be cautious of the following:
Beaches have reportedly been a dumping ground for polluted untreated waste and garbage; therefore, it is highly recommended you advise your expats to stay out of the water and drink bottled water in order to avoid risks from disease or becoming violently ill.
The Zika virus
According to a recent article in The Guardian, “Brazil’s health minister was warned that the country is “badly losing” the battle against the mosquito blamed for spreading Zika virus, which has been linked to birth defects.” While authorities have promised to step up eradication efforts for the Olympics, the problem remains. Your assignees should be aware of the risks and do their best to protect themselves.
Safety concerns are at an all-time high during large events. From gangs to terrorist threats, it is important to stay alert and take necessary steps to keep your expats safe.
Prepare for assignments ahead of time to ensure temporary and permanent housing will be readily available. All of those visitors means lodging will be at a premium, so if you know you’ll need housing for your employees, don’t wait until the last minute.
Related to above, temporary living and housing prices tend to increase during these events, so prepare your budgets accordingly. Costs of other goods and services may rise as well.
It is always important to plan in advance for international relocations, but even more so during grand events such as the Olympics. From rising costs to security issues to concerns with possible delays in immigration and household goods shipments, the complications only increase. Make sure you’re ready with a team who is prepared and understands the hazards of this growing assignment destination!
To receive expert advice and more information about assignments into Brazil, please contact a Lexicon representative today.