Brazil is interested in the Japanese tourist. According to the Brazilian Institute of Tourism (Embratur), approximately 40 thousand Japanese tourists visit Brazil every year.
Embratur's President, Eduardo Sanovicz, said he believes this number could be much greater, and this is the reason why Embratur is opening an office in Tokyo, to promote tourism in Brazil and in the Mercosur.
According to Sanovicz, few Japanese tourists visit Brazil. In 2003, there were 39 thousand, and in 2004, 43 thousand, a 10% increase.
With the Tokyo office, Embratur aims at raising this number to 100 thousand in three years. "Which represents a little more than 1% of the total number of tourists that visit Brazil," he said.
Sanovicz explained that when Japanese tourists go to Brazil, they also visit neighbor countries, such as Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Chile, since it is already a long trip for them.
That is why Embratur will work "in a coordinated and cooperative way to attract Asian people to Brazil and neighboring countries."
Tourism, according to Sanovicz, is the third axis of Brazil's economic development in the services area, and has generated, this year alone, more than US$ 1.3 billion, which is a record number.