December 17th, 2021
1. Bolsonaro summoned by Federal Police to discuss illegal leak of investigation
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro was summoned by the Federal Police (PF) to discuss the leak of confidential documents related to the attack of the Superior Electoral Court (TSE) internal network in 2018.
On August 4, 2021, Bolsonaro posted a document about the leak on his social media channels. At the time, he claimed the document proved the Brazilian electoral system was untrustworthy.
TSE demanded that Federal Supreme Court Justice Alexandre de Moraes investigate the case. Moraes accepted the request, considering it to be related to the “Fake News” investigation.
This is the second time Bolsonaro has been summoned by the Federal Police. The first was during an investigation into his interference with the leadership of the PF following an accusation by former minister Sergio Moro.
2. Poll reveals 55% of Brazilians disapprove of the Bolsonaro administration
This week, the IPEC polling institute revealed that 55% of Brazilians think the Bolsonaro administration is bad or awful. The number is increasing steadily – it was 53% in September, 49% in June, and 39% in February. Furthermore, the President’s approval rate is decreasing. According to the poll, only 19% of Brazilians believe the administration is doing a good job. This figure was 22% in September, 24% in June, and 28% in February.
The percentage of Brazilians who believe the Bolsonaro administration is average is now 25%. In February, it was 31%, 26% in June, and 23% in September. Those who did not know or did not want to answer the poll were 2% of Brazilians in February and 1% in the last three polls.
IPEC also published its voting projection poll for the 2022 presidential election. In the first round of elections, former president Lula is leading with 48% of the vote. President Jair Bolsonaro is in second place with 21%. Former judge Sergio Moro is in third with 6% and is technically tied with Ciro Gomes, who has 5%. The margin of error is 2 percentage.
3. Precatory Constitutional Amendment Bill approved in first round of votes, authorizing Auxílio Brasil
The Chamber of Deputies approved the text for the Precatory Constitutional Amendment Bill in the first round of votes, accepting all alterations suggested by the Senate. In total, 327 representatives voted in favor of the bill, 147 voted against, and one abstained from voting. With this limitation on precatory payments, the country will have over $100 billion R available to pay for Auxílio Brasil from the 2022 budget.
Among the changes suggested by the Senate and now approved by the Chamber of Deputies is authorizing payment of government debts in installments until 2026. Parties and senators disagreed on this issue. Another passage that was not approved concerned the postponement of payments.
Representatives had to analyze changes suggested by the parties. The bill still needs to go through a second round of voting before it is enacted.
4. Brazilian GDP per capita will take 7 years to return to 2013 levels
Many people wonder how the coronavirus pandemic and the current economic downturn will affect Brazilians over the next few years. A study by the Brazilian Institute of Economics at Fundação Getulio Vargas (IBRE/FGV) reveals that economic recovery will be slow for Brazilians. This is borne out by per capita Gross Domestic Product (the sum added value created in the country divided by the number of inhabitants) projections. It will take at least seven years for Brazilian GDP per capita to match 2013 levels.
According to IBRE/FGV, per capita GDP will reach R$36,661 at the end of this year, 3.8% above its figure last year. The index is 1% below pre-pandemic levels in 2019 (R$36,969). The country reached its highest GDP per capita figure in 2013, (R$39,685 – 7.7% higher than the current level).
According to Silvia Mattos, coordinator of the IBRE/FGV study, the country will only be able to return to 2013 levels in 2028. However, to achieve this, GDP will need to grow by 2.1% a year from 2023 to 2028. Disregarding population increase, this would entail a 1.5% per year increase of per capita GDP – an optimistic rate.
Estadão: Com economia patinando, PIB per capita só volta ao patamar de 2013 em 2028, estima Ibre/FGVO Globo: Após queda no setor de serviços, analistas já revisam projeções do PIB anual e do quarto trimestre
5. ANVISA demands proof of COVID-19 vaccination from travelers
Beginning on December 13, Brazilian authorities should have demanded that all travelers from abroad present proof of vaccination upon arriving at airports or land borders. This requirement was enacted by the Brazilian Health Regulatory Agency (ANVISA). However, it was not followed in airports, as many passengers did not present proof of vaccination.
Travelers complained about long lines and delays at international airports in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, claiming they waited for hours with no social distancing. This resulted in many being allowed into the country without showing proof of vaccination, including travelers from Europe, the United States, and other South American countries.
The proof of vaccination requirement was officially mandated on Saturday (11th) through a provisional decision by Federal Supreme Court Justice Luís Roberto Barroso.