Photo: Spanish passport
Fran came to Brazil from Seville in 2011 to complete his degree in computer engineering and, given the possibilities Rio de Janeiro offers, decided to stay. Like him, many other Spaniards have come to find opportunities in Brazil that their own country doesn’t offer them.
The 27-year-old found a job and currently lives in an apartment in Arpoador, one of the city’s more exclusive areas, with three other Spaniards who have found an independence in Brazil that is hard to find in their native land.
The four, engineers and architects, are yet another example of the new profile of Spanish emigrant who comes to Brazil with a higher education and career training to fill positions in a country with an expanding economy and a jobless rate of 4.6 percent.
Brazil offers “more chances for doing well than either Barcelona or Madrid, plus it has job stability,” Fran says, though he does not rule out returning home sometime in the near future.
He says that Spanish engineers “are highly regarded in Brazil,” but warns that “it’s not easy to come here and find work, because the bureaucratic procedures are interminable and Brazilian businessmen prefer to hire a native of the country, because it’s all much easier.”
The Spanish ambassador to Brazil, Manuel de la Camara, agrees with him and told Efe that “because of the professional protectionism in Brazil, a country where only 0.3 percent of workers are foreigners, it gets very difficult for those who arrive in the country without having something already arranged.”
Between 2008, the year Spain’s economic crisis exploded, and 2013, the number of Spaniards registered in Brazil jumped 41.5 percent to nearly 100,000, though the real number is much greater, given that many here are undocumented.
Brazil,set to host the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics, is a country under construction in terms of infrastructures and housing, something not seen in Spain for years.