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100 million Brazilians witness our human as well as commercial commitment to Brazil.
Prince Harry’s four-day, three-city tour to Brazil promoted the UK to hundreds of our key contacts and millions of Brazilians. Visits to the capital Brasilia, Sao Paulo, and Belo Horizonte (capital of Minas Gerais state, an economy the size of the Philippines), reached an online audience of over 20 million and press coverage of over 80 million. The visit achieved all three objectives of the programme: to advance our bilateral interests, promote the UK through sport, and show our commitment to Brazil’s development.
0.3 Advancing UK interests
We held our Queen’s Birthday Party in Sao Paulo, the third biggest city in the world and the economic heart of Brazil. Prince Harry’s presence helped us attract 400 of the key decision makers in Brazil, including Sao Paulo Mayor Haddad, to GREAT Britain House, the hub of our GREAT programme of events throughout the World Cup.
At GREAT Britain House Belo Horizonte, Prince Harry promoted UK Plc to business leaders and local politicians, including 200 potential inward investors to the UK. Belo Horizonte is the political home of opposition presidential candidate, Aecio Neves, and, with 20 million people living in the surrounding state of Minas Gerais, offers important commercial opportunities for the UK.
This visit focused on the wider benefits sport can bring. Prince Harry was seen at a Brazil game in Brasilia by 70,000 football-mad Brazilians, including the Foreign Minister, as well as at England’s final match. Prince Harry also took part in a children’s football match organised by NGO ACER. Run by Jonathan Hannay MBE, ACER is based in one of Sao Paulo’s poorest communities and uses sport, music and dance to teach children how to deal with a range of social challenges.
The visit to Sarah Hospital in Brasilia showed how sport is used by one of Brazil’s leading rehabilitation facilities. After talking to some of the wheelchair basketball players, Prince Harry continued to captivate children and their parents as he engaged in other rehabilitation activities, including kayaking with a patient on the world’s largest manmade lake.
In Belo Horizonte, where British athletes will train ahead of the Rio 2016 Olympics and Paralympics, Prince Harry was shown around Minas Tenis Clube by the presidents of the British Olympic and Paralympic Associations, and witnessed BPA agreements with the local authorities. 2500 local children and parents watched in delight as HRH met the world’s fastest swimmer Cesar Cielo and Paralympics GB double World Champion judoka Ben Quilter. Prince Harry also launched the British Council’s ‘Try-rugby’ programme in Minas Gerais.
0.4 Supporting Brazil’s development
Over the past 10 years, 41 million Brazilians have come out of poverty, life expectancy has increased, and inequality has fallen. But huge challenges remain. 50,000 Brazilians are murdered each year, and Brazil is the world’s second market for cocaine. Prince Harry’s visit to Cracolandia, a district of Sao Paulo famous for concentrating crack addicts, generated online debates about the city’s new approach of trying to support addicts return to work as opposed to penalising them.
A visit to the Atlantic Rainforest showed how the State of Sao Paulo is working to support residents living there. The project expects to preserve and restore over 21,000 hectares of rainforest, and the sight of Prince Harry planting trees with local children highlighted our ongoing work with Brazil on sustainability. Prince Harry visited the Ayrton Senna Institute, aimed at reducing the inequality gap between ’the two Brazils’ through improved education.
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