Peru, Argentina, and Brazil: Facts

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1 Peru, Argentina, and Brazil: Facts PERU Background/Brief History: Ancient Peru consisted of several Andean civilizations. The most familiar civilization to the world is the Incan Empire. The Incan empire was invaded, captured and colonized by the Spanish conquistadors in Peruvian independence was finally declared in 1821, and the remaining Spanish forces were defeated in After a dozen years of military rule, Peru returned to democratic leadership in Climate: varies from tropical in east to dry desert in west; temperate to frigid in the Andes Terrain: western coastal plain (costa), high and rugged Andes in center (sierra), eastern lowland jungle of Amazon Basin (selva) Natural Resources: copper, silver, gold, petroleum, timber, fish, iron ore, coal, phosphate, potash, hydropower, natural gas Languages: Spanish (official) 84.1%, Quechua (official) 13%, Aymara (official) 1.7%, Ashaninka 0.3%, other native languages (includes a large number of minor Amazonian languages) 0.7%, other 0.2% (2007 Census) Religions: Roman Catholic 81.3%, Evangelical 12.5%, other 3.3%, 2012, TESCCC 04/22/13 page 1 of 6

2 unspecified or none 2.9% (2007 Census) Ethnicity: Amerindian 45%, Mestizo (mixed Amerindian and white) 37%, white 15%, black, Japanese, Chinese, and other 3% Government: constitutional republic Capital: Lima Economy: Important mineral resources are found in the mountainous and coastal areas, and Peru's coastal waters provide excellent fishing grounds. Peruvian economy has been growing in most recent years. Since 2006, Peru has signed trade deals with the U.S., Canada, Singapore, China, Korea, Mexico, and Japan. 2012, TESCCC 04/22/13 page 2 of 6

3 Argentina Background/Brief History: In 1816, the United Provinces of the Rio Plata declared their independence from Spain. After Bolivia, Paraguay, and Uruguay went their separate ways, the area that remained became Argentina. The country's population and culture were heavily shaped by immigrants from throughout Europe, but most particularly Italy and Spain, which provided the largest percentage of newcomers from 1860 to Climate: mostly temperate; arid in southeast; subantarctic in southwest Terrain: rich plains of the Pampas in northern half, flat to rolling plateau of Patagonia in south, rugged Andes along western border Natural Resources: fertile plains of the pampas, lead, zinc, tin, copper, iron ore, manganese, petroleum, uranium Languages: Spanish (official), Italian, English, German, French, indigenous (Mapudungun, Quechua) Religions: Roman Catholic 92%, Protestant 2%, Jewish 2%, other 4% Ethnicity: white (mostly Spanish and Italian) 97%, mestizo (mixed 2012, TESCCC 04/22/13 page 3 of 6

4 white and Amerindian ancestry), Amerindian, or other non-white groups 3% Government: republic Capital: Buenos Aires Economy: Argentina benefits from rich natural resources, a highly literate population, an export-oriented agricultural sector, and a diversified industrial base. Although one of the world's wealthiest countries 100 years ago, Argentina suffered during most of the 20th century from recurring economic crises. Today, they have a growing and fairly strong economy. 2012, TESCCC 04/22/13 page 4 of 6

5 Brazil Background/Brief History: Following more than three centuries under Portuguese rule, Brazil gained its independence in 1822, maintaining a monarchical system of government until the abolition of slavery in 1888 and the subsequent proclamation of a republic by the military in Brazilian coffee exporters politically dominated the country until populist leader Getulio Vargas rose to power in By far the largest and most populous country in South America, Brazil underwent more than a half century of populist and military government until 1985, when the military regime peacefully ceded power to civilian rulers. Climate: mostly tropical, but temperate in south Terrain: mostly flat to rolling lowlands in north; some plains, hills, mountains, and narrow coastal belt Natural Resources: bauxite, gold, iron ore, manganese, nickel, phosphates, platinum, tin, rare earth elements, uranium, petroleum, hydropower, timber Languages: Portuguese (official and most widely spoken language) note: less common languages include Spanish (border areas and schools), German, Italian, Japanese, English, and a large number of minor Amerindian languages Religions: Roman Catholic 73.6%, Protestant 15.4%, Spiritualist 2012, TESCCC 04/22/13 page 5 of 6

6 1.3%, Bantu/voodoo 0.3%, other 1.8%, unspecified 0.2%, none 7.4% (2000 census) Ethnicity: white 53.7%, mulatto (mixed white and black) 38.5%, black 6.2%, other (includes Japanese, Arab, Amerindian) 0.9%, unspecified 0.7% (2000 census) Government: federal republic Capital: Brasilia Economy: Characterized by large and well-developed agricultural, mining, manufacturing, and service sectors, Brazil's economy outweighs that of all other South American countries, and Brazil is expanding its presence in world markets. Text and images courtesy of the Central Intelligence Agency: CIA. (2013). The world factbook. Retrieved from , TESCCC 04/22/13 page 6 of 6

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