Brazil: Informal Sector Braces for World CupMultimedia, Slideshow Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011
Most estimates about Brazil’s informal sector and its percentage share of the country’s GDP range in the teens, with some figures as high as 30 percent of the country’s economy. But with the 2014 football World Cup looming — and the 2016 Olympic Games approaching soon after — the livelihoods of these informal workers and others are now directly threatened as a result of preparations being made for these events, critics say.
“(T)housands of the city’s residents are being removed from their homes,” organisers noted at a recent protest held in front of a World Cup qualifying match in Rio de Janeiro. “(S)treet vendors are prevented from working and the vast majority of the population will not have enough money to pay for tickets to the World Cup.”
About 68 billion dollars in economic benefits are projected from the tournament alone, but community organisations argue that the major infrastructural projects will only benefit a few neighbourhoods, companies and social groups and not the majority of the population, including the masses of labourers who make up the country’s robust informal economy.
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