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Brazil Military - 2024


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Military and security forces

Brazilian Armed Forces (Forças Armadas Brasileiras): Brazilian Army (Exercito Brasileiro, EB), Brazilian Navy (Marinha do Brasil, MB, includes Naval Aviation (Aviacao Naval Brasileira) and Marine Corps (Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais)), Brazilian Air Force (Forca Aerea Brasileira, FAB) (2024)

note: Brazil's Federal Police are under the Minister of Justice and Public Security

Military expenditures

1.2% of GDP (2022 est.)
1.3% of GDP (2021 est.)
1.4% of GDP (2020 est.)
1.4% of GDP (2019 est.)
1.5% of GDP (2018 est.)

Military and security service personnel strengths

approximately 360,000 active military personnel (220,000 Army; 70,000 Navy; 70,000 Air Force); approximately 400,000 paramilitary security forces (2023)

Military equipment inventories and acquisitions

the Brazilian military's inventory consists of a mix of domestically produced and imported weapons, largely from Europe and the US; in recent years, the US and several European countries have been the leading suppliers of military equipment to Brazil; Brazil's defense industry designs and manufactures equipment for all three military services and for export; it also jointly produces equipment with other countries (2023)

Military service age and obligation

18-45 years of age for compulsory military service for men (women exempted); only 5-10% of those inducted are required to serve; conscript service obligation is 10-12 months; 17-45 years of age for voluntary service (2024)

note: in 2022, women comprised approximately 9% of the Brazilian military

Military - note

the Brazilian Armed Forces (BAF) are the second largest military in the Western Hemisphere behind the US; they are responsible for external security and protecting the country's sovereignty; the BAF’s missions include patrolling and protecting the country’s long borders and coastline and extensive territorial waters and river network, assisting with internal security, providing domestic disaster response and humanitarian assistance, and participating in multinational peacekeeping missions

the Army has a considerable internal security role; in the past decade, it has mobilized thousands of troops to conduct counternarcotics operations, support the police in combating crime, assist with disease outbreaks and humanitarian missions, and provide security for major events such as the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics; it has also cooperated with neighboring countries such as Argentina and Paraguay on border security to combat smuggling and trafficking; the Army is organized into regional commands, military regions, and geographically based divisions covering the entirety of the country; it has approximately 30 combat brigades which include light, mechanized, or motorized infantry, light armored/cavalry, special operations, artillery, and helicopter forces; many of the light infantry brigades are specialized for air mobile, airborne, jungle, mountain, or urban warfare operations; the Army has established a battalion-sized (1,000 troops) expeditionary force for foreign international missions that it plans to increase to a 3,000-strong brigade by 2030

the Navy conducts coastal, regional, and riverine operations and has a wide variety of missions ranging from sea patrolling and power projection to countering piracy, illegal fishing, narcotics trafficking, and organized crime; it is organized into nine districts covering the entirety of the country; the Navy’s principal warships include frigates, corvettes, and offshore patrol ships, attack submarines, and a multi-purpose helicopter landing platform (LPH) amphibious assault ship that serves as the fleet’s flagship; it also has a considerable coastal and riverine patrol vessel fleet, an aviation wing with combat aircraft and helicopters, and a marine amphibious force

the Air Force has over 100 fighter and ground attack aircraft, as well as dozens of support aircraft and helicopters for missions such as patrolling, reconnaissance, transport, logistics, special missions, and training

the three national police forces – the Federal Police, Federal Highway Police, and Federal Railway Police – have domestic security responsibilities and report to the Ministry of Justice and Public Security (Ministry of Justice); there are two distinct units within the state police forces: the civil police, which performs an investigative role, and the military police, charged with maintaining law and order in the states and the Federal District; despite the name, military police forces report to the Ministry of Justice, not the Ministry of Defense; the National Public Security Force (Forca Nacional de Seguranca Publica or SENASP) is a national police force made up of Military Police from various states

Brazil has Major Non-NATO Ally (MNNA) status with the US, a designation under US law that provides foreign partners with certain benefits in the areas of defense trade and security cooperation

the origins of Brazil's military stretch back to the 1640s; Brazil provided a 25,000-man expeditionary force with air and ground units to fight with the Allies in the Mediterranean Theater during World War II; the Navy participated in the Battle of the Atlantic (2023)

NOTE: The information regarding Brazil on this page is re-published from the 2024 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Brazil 2024 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Brazil 2024 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 04 May 24, Copyright © 2024 ITA all rights reserved.