Estonia and Brazil »

Brazil - Relations


(last updated: 30.09.2013)

Brazil recognised the independence of the Republic of Estonia on 5 December 1921 and also voted for the accession of Estonia into the League of Nations on 22 September 1921.

Brazil re-recognised Estonia on 4 September 1991 and diplomatic relations were established on 16 December 1991.

Brazil opened its embassy in Tallinn in the summer of 2011; prior to that Estonia was covered by the embassy in Helsinki. The first ambassador of Brazil to Estonia was Bernardo de Azevedo Brito (1994-1998). The current ambassador to Estonia is Vergniaud Elyseu Filho, who presented his credentials on 28 September 2011.

On 9 April 2013 Estonia's special mission in Brazil started work. It is currently located in the Portuguese Embassy in Brasília, the capital of Brazil. The special mission is Estonia’s first diplomatic representation in South America. The primary assignment of the special mission (staffed by diplomat Urmas Eigla) is to make preparations to open an Estonian embassy.

Estonia also has three honorary consuls in Brazil. As of 1996 Honorary Consul General Jüri Saukas has represented Estonia in Brazil; his consular district comprises the states of São Paulo and Parana. Flemming Patrick Rickfors (a citizen of Denmark) has worked as honorary consul since 2001 and his consular district is the city of Santos. Since April 2008, the Brazil designer and garment manufacturer with Estonian roots Oskar Metsavaht is Estonia's honorary consul in Rio de Janeiro.

From 2004-2012, Brazil’s honorary consul in Estonia was Magnus Skjörshammer.


to Brazil
January 2013 Bilateral meeting of Foreign Minister Urmas Paet and Brazilian Foreign Minister Antonio de Aguiar Patriota in Santiago during the EL-CELAC summit
June 2012 Foreign Minister Urmas Paet in Rio de Janeiro for the UN Sustainable Development Conference (Rio+20)
April 2012 Meeting of Foreign Minister Urmas Paet and Brazilian Foreign Minister Antonio de Aguiar Patriota during Open Government Partnership; also a brief meeting with President Dilma Rousseff
May 2010 Foreign Minister Urmas Paet in Rio De janeiro at the UN Alliance of Civilizations Forum
April 2008 Foreign Minister Urmas Paet in Brazil (and Argentina)
to Estonia
June 2010 Brazilian Foreign Minister Celso Amorim in Estonia, where he met with PM Ansip, Preisdent Ilves, FM Paet, and Speaker Ergma

Political consultations between the foreign ministries of Estonia and Brazil are held regularly.


  • In 1932 a trade agreement between Estonia and Brazil was concluded in Paris.
  • 31.03.2006 Agreement on Co-operation in the Field of Culture, Education and Science.
  • 24.04.2006 Agreement on Co-operation in the Field of Tourism.

Economic Relations


In summary: from 2009 to September of 2012 trade with Brazil has grown in the areas of both import and export, and trade makes up 0.3% of Estonia’s total trade. Brazil is Estonia’s most important trade partner in South America. The main articles of export are machinery and equipment, plastic and rubber products, and medical and measurement devices.

Import was dominated by weapons and ammunition, metals, and machinery and equipment.

In terms of trade turnover 2012, Brazil was Estonia’s  34th  trade partner in terms of trade turnover (74.8  million euros), ranking first among Latin American countries. Trade with Brazil made up 0.3% of Estonia’s total trade.

In 2012, Brazil was Estonia’s 32nd export partner. Export to Brazil totalled 37.3  million euros 0.3% of total exports. The main articles of export were:  machinery and equipment (telephones; electrical switches and their parts; insulated wire) – 68%,, medical and measurement devices (instruments and devices to measure flow, level parameters, etc; aerometers and other submergent measuring devices) – 11.6%, and plastic and rubber products (amino and phenol residues; other plastic products) – 8.1%.

As an import partner, Brazil ranked in  29th place in 2012, with imports totalling 37.5 million euros in value (0.3% of total imports). Imports were mostly weapons and ammunition (shells for military weapons) – 49.1%, machinery and equipment (telephones; integrated circuits; printed circuit boards) – 25.3%,   andmetals and metal products (iron alloys) – 18%

Between 2006 and September 2012 Estonian export to Brazil was about 0.2-0.4% of total exports while imports totalled about 0.1-0.3% of the total. Trade with Brazil has grown since 2009.

In the last 3 years, Estonian export to Brazil makes up about 0.3-0.4% of total exports; at the same time, import from Brazil made up 0.1-0.3% of the total import. Since 2009, trade with Brazil has increased.

Trade in the period 2006-2013 (million EUR):

Year Import Export
2006 18.5 9.3
2007 20.1 13.8
2008 24.6 19.7
2009 14.9 9.1
2010 28.6 16.1
2011 48.8 17.7
2012 37.3 37.5
2013 (5 months) 15.2 7.7

Source: Statistical Office of Estonia


In summary: Estonian direct investments to Brazil have also grown and as of 31 March 2013 total nearly 7 million euros.

According to Bank of Estonia data, Estonia’s direct investment position as of 31 March 2013 was 6.8 million euros. Investments have mainly been made in real estate and in professional, research and technical activity as well as financial- and insurance activity.

At the same time, Brazil’s direct investments in Estonia are 0.1 million euros. . Investments have mainly been made in real estate, financial- and insurance activity as well as in professional, research and technical activity.

Cultural Relations

The Brazilian Embassy in Helsinki has donated books to the Simon Bolívar Latin American reading hall in the Estonian National Library. J. Amado and J. Machado de Assis’ literary works have been translated into Estonian.

In 2006 Jaan Elken took part in a group exhibition at the Santa Catarina Art Museum.

In 2006 the animated film “The Little Short-Sighted Snake” won a prize at a Brazilian film festival. Brazilian films have participated in Estonian film festivals (PÖFF).

Estonians have had many opportunities to enjoy wonderful Brazilian jazz musicians (Joyce in 2007, Leny Andrade in 2008, Joao Bosco in 2009, young singer Giana Viscardi on 9 December 2009 at Jõulujazz). A Brazilian family group (Clić Brazil) performed at the Viljandi Folk Music Festival in 2009. At the end of 2008 the first ever Brazilian music festival in Tallinn, entitled “Tallinn Winter Tropics”, took place.

In August of 2009 an international friendly football match between Estonia and Brazil took place in Tallinn, where Estonia lost to Brazil by just 0:1.

In 2012 the Tallinn Sinfonietta (chamber members) gave concerts in Jundiai and Piracicaba in Brazil.

Estonian community in Brazil

(Based on the information of Alide Slet and Aksella Luts)

At present there are about 500 Estonians in Brazil. The majority of them have assembled in the city and state of São Paulo, with a smaller number settling in Rio de Janeiro, Parana, Rio Grande do Sul and other states. They are interested in closer ties with their homeland.

Some Estonians already settled in Brazil at the end of the 19th century. The majority of Estonians emigrated to Brazil in three groups: the first group arrived at the invitation of the Brazilian Government in 1917-1918, when they travelled free of charge and were given pieces of land by the state. Another group arrived in 1924-1925 under similar conditions. Since the Estonians had no experience with the Brazilian climate and farming, many of them left the countryside and went to the cities, where working conditions were better. According to data from the state of São Paulo, 2,597 Estonians arrived in Brazil through the Port of Santos during the period 1921-1939. Actually, the number of Estonians who travelled to Brazil was greater. The third group arrived after World War II. This last group of people consisted mainly of professionals that went straight to the cities to seek work in their specific fields.

They typically work for international companies and several of them have their own enterprises. There are also Estonians holding leading posts in the enterprises of the Brazilian government.

A number of Estonian organisations are active in Brazil. There are a great number of citizens of the Republic of Estonia who have not applied for the citizenship of the host country.

In 2006, in order to meet the needs of Estonians living in Brazil, a consular mission was arranged to São Paulo. In the course of the mission the Estonian consul, who resides in New York, rendered different consular services to the local Estonians and received applications for Estonian  passports.