Brazil’s Ministry of Tourism and the Brazilian Tourism Institute (Embratur) disclosed on Monday, October 10, a research about the profile of foreign tourists that was developed by the Economic Research Institute Foundation (Fipe).
The study shows that 96% of visitors coming to the country plan to return and that the number of tourists granting the country top grade has risen from 26.6% to 31.5%. The main complaints were against high prices and bad roads and airports.
The director of the study and research department at the Ministry of Tourism, José Francisco de Salles Lopes, was surprised with the good impression that Brazil causes on visitors.
“What is more important is the positive evaluation they made of hospitality. Of the total number of tourists interviewed, 85% said that Brazil equaled or overcame expectations,” said Lopes.
Research “Study of International Demand on Brazil” was promoted by the Fipe at the request of the Ministry of Tourism and Embratur, and was developed from January to October 2010, a year in which Brazil received 5.1 million foreign tourists. During the 10 months, over 300 researchers worked in 15 airports and 11 land frontiers. In the period, 39,000 interviews were made.
According to the Ministry of Tourism, foreign visitors were interviewed in the airports of Manaus, Belém, Fortaleza, Natal, Recife, Maceió, Salvador, Porto Seguro, Brasília, Belo Horizonte, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Curitiba, Florianópolis and Porto Alegre, as well as border checks in Chuí, Jaguarão, Santana do Livramento, Uruguaiana and São Borja, in Rio Grande do Sul, Dionísio Cerqueira, Foz do Iguaçu, in the state of Paraná, Ponta Porã and Corumbá, in Mato Grosso do Sul, Epitaciolândia, in Acre, and Pacaraima, in Roraima.
The airports researched represent 99% of the international air tourist flow in the country and the land border checks, 90% of the land flow.
Still according to the study, 46.1% of foreigners come to Brazil on tourism and 23.3% come on business. The others come to visit relatives or for other reasons. São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Foz do Iguaçu, in Paraná, are the cities that receive most tourists.
Most of those traveling to São Paulo visit the capital on business, to visit fairs and to participate in conventions. Regarding Rio de Janeiro, the city attracts tourists on leisure. Foz do Iguaçu attracts those seeking nature tourism, according to Lopes.
Although Rio de Janeiro, Foz do Iguaçu and São Paulo stand for the main attractions, Paraty, in Rio de Janeiro recorded growth of 37% in foreign tourist flow as against 2004, when the study started being promoted.
Cairu, in Bahia, attracted 64% more tourists. Lopes stated that marketing campaigns of these cities are the main reason for their growth among foreign destinations.
According to the study, 46% of visitors from other countries come from South America, 31% are European and 15% come from North America. Argentina (1.3 million) and the United States (641.000) answer to 40% of the tourists that Brazil receives.
Lopes recognizes that Brazil still receives few tourists from the Middle East and says that the country needs to make an effort to attract them. “We must invest in them, as they are have high buying power,” he said.
The Europeans are among the tourists that spend most on their travels to Brazil. They leave US$ 1,614 during their visits, which last, on average, 24.3 days. They spend an average of three times more than South Americans, who tend to stay in Brazil for 10.3 days.
The North Americans spend on average 19.5 days in Brazil, with expenses of US$ 1,382 in the country during their stay. The error margin in the research is 5%.
The Brazilian Foreign Office (Itamaraty) should strengthen trade promotion. A series of measures in this respect were announced by Foreign minister Antonio Patriota, during a seminar about the World Trade Organization (WTO), in Brasília.
Among the initiatives are greater participation of the ministry in international fairs and the greater trade promotion in Brazil’s diplomatic representations abroad.
The seminar celebrates the ten years since the creation of the General Coordination of Disputes (CGC) at the Itamaraty and Patriota made use of the opportunity to recall that, at the time, in 2001, the world was facing an international crisis due to the terrorist attacks of September 11th.
Today, he recalled, the world is living an economic/financial crisis. “Brazil is aware of the evolution of this scenery. We must continue exploring new trade opportunities, especially in our relations with other developing nations,” he said.
Patriota stated that the crisis has had negative results in perspectives for negotiations underway at the WTO and has also had negative impact on the conclusion of bioregional and bilateral agreements. Some of the measures that the ministry is going to adopt are strengthening of trade defense.
One of them includes greater number of diplomats to operate in the area at the CGC and another, the selection of a law office to provide services for Brazil abroad, at disputes in the scope of the WTO, as the contract with the current board comes to a close at the end of the year.
The Itamaraty has signed a protocol of intentions with the Federal Attorney (AGU) establishing partnership to improve the technical training of the ministry in international defense and should include discipline “WTO and Disputes” in its curriculum for diplomat training at Rio Branco Institute. Still in the area, the ministry should promote meetings with business leaders to identify hardships.
Patriota has announced a new edition of a joint program with the Ministry of Agriculture aimed at qualifying diplomats for the promotion of agricultural products abroad, to take place this month and to include heads of agricultural sectors at the embassies of Brazil in 25 countries that are considered priority and strategic for agribusiness.
“Brazil is aware that, in a scenery of economic crisis, and due to the hardships in advancing with the trade negotiations that are underway, it should take new creative efforts like visits to promote the Brazilian product and expand exports to other markets,” said the minister. The activities announced are part of the “2011-2014 National Strategy for Exports”, developed by several ministries and organizations connected to the government.
Initiatives include greater participation of the Trade Promotion Department (DPR) at the Itamaraty in fairs abroad, from 130 in 2010 to 190 in 2015. Among other actions, the ministry should increase the number of market researches promoted by the DPR from 35 to 100; it should expand the number of road shows to attract foreign investment in infrastructure, sports events, green economy and innovation by 50%, as well as increasing the exporter record in an enquiry network for importers from other countries by 40%. The plan also includes the expanding of sectors for trade promotion abroad from the current 100 units in 78 countries to 134 units in 101 countries over the next four years.
New regional meetings will be scheduled with the heads of the Trade Promotion sectors of embassies. This has already been developed in Washington, Brussels and Shanghai. The next should take place on November 1st and 2nd, at the Embassy of Brazil in Doha, Qatar, where talks will be developed to promote Brazilian exports to the region.
Patriota recalled that the opening of the embassies in Africa and the Middle East, as well as Central Asia, together with other initiatives like the Summit of South American-Arab Countries (Aspa), helped increase trade with the region.