Brazilians hoping Carnival celebrations will boost ailing economy

Global Business

Revelers are out in the streets of Rio celebrating carnival– many are looking for a way to get their minds off Brazil’s political and economic crisis. It’s also an opportunity for visitors to have fun and generate revenue to help the city’s ailing economy.

CGTN’s Lucrecia Franco has more.

In Rio, Carnival lovers have taken to the streets to dance and also to profit off the city’s famous party. With unemployment hitting around 12 percent, according to the latest official numbers, the party is the moment to make some extra money.

Liana Oliveira is selling coconut water to thirsty revelers and has high hopes.

“I have been unemployed for months now , and I am looking forward to earn some money in these days to pay my bills. I have many debts,” Oliveira said.

Rio officials are expecting one-and-a-half million tourists, who will spend around a billion dollars. Many of the visitors are from abroad.  More than 450 street bands, like this one, are parading in this year’s Carnival. It is free and a way to promote the city as a must-go destination.

Michael Nagy is the commercial director of the Rio Convention and Visitors Bureau. He says occupancy is at 95 percent.

“This is the legacy of these modern hotels from the World Cup and the Olympics. You are looking at Rio, more dynamic and cheaper than it used to be, due to the fact that there is more completion. It is all going in the right direction,” Nagy said.

Mark Langevin discusses Brazil’s economy

CGTN’s Rachelle Akuffo spoke with Mark Langevin, director of the Brazil Initiative, about Brazil’s economic landscape.