Survey reveals Brazilians’ high regard for Arabs

Sunday 25 October 2015

Dubai - MENA Herald: Recent studies commissioned by the Embassy of Oman reveal the high regard the majority of Brazilians have towards Arab people and their dependents who reside in Brazil, as well as the strong positive perception towards the countries within the region. The Arab community currently residing in Brazil is estimated at more than 10 million who maintain strong relations with their host country. This serves as encouragement for cooperative efforts from the Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce (ABCC).

The latest survey, which was conducted by Pesquisas Avançadas interviewed 741 men and women hailing from all age groups and different socio-economic profiles and from all regions of Brazil. Results showed  that the majority of respondents described the Arabs that live in Brazil as hard workers (97 per cent), respectful (93 per cent), perceptive (92 per cent), entrepreneurial (91 per cent), educated (91 per cent), studious (90 per cent), intelligent (89 per cent), ethical (89 per cent), good people (88 per cent), happy (86 per cent), friendly (85 per cent), honest (85 per cent), trustworthy (80 per cent), parsimonious (72 per cent), extroverted (57 per cent), modern (57 per cent), and emotional (54 per cent).

Rubens Hannun vice-president of Foreign Trade of the Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce, said: “The results of this survey are a wonderful encouragement in the efforts of the ABCC to strengthen social and economic ties between Brazil and the Arab World.  We remain committed to fostering solid communication channels and building bridges between the two regions through dynamic trade relations and exciting cultural exchange programs.  The Gulf features a wealth of opportunities for many businesses in Brazil, while similarly Brazil offers wide potential as well. The positive regard of the Brazilian people for the Arab people and region will surely cultivate stronger ties.”

The survey also records the Arab community’s strong level of integration in Brazilian society. Although 75 per cent of those surveyed have said that Arabs and their descendants preserve features of their countries of origin, 88 per cent said that they like Brazil, 82 per cent that they are considered, in fact, Brazilians and 79 per cent say that they are well integrated to local society.

The vast majority also answered that they would welcome Arab people into their family, as well as in their professional life, businesses, and social interactions.

Regarding the influence of Arabs in Brazil, 57 per cent answered that they contributed to trade, 42 per cent to cuisine, 21 per cent to the economy, 11 per cent to the health sector, and 11 per cent to the arts. Another positive indicator is the strong integration of cuisine, as many Brazilians are inclined towards Arab dishes in their daily lives, favoring kibbeh, esfihas and tabbouleh. The survey reveals that 68 per cent of those surveyed would like to visit an Arab country, with the most cited nations being Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Egypt, Syria, and Lebanon.

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