Diplomatic relations between Brazil and Russia were established in 1828. The agenda of their expanded in the 1980s, culminating in the working visit of then-President José Sarney to Moscow – the first one of a Brazilian Head of State -, in 1988. In November 2004, President Vladimir Putin made the first working visit of a Russian Head of State to Brazil.
In 1997, the Brazilian-Russian High-Level Cooperation Commission (CAN) was established, co-chaired by the Vice-President of the Republic and the Prime Minister of Russia. The technical and operational mechanism of the CAN is the Brazil-Russia Intergovernmental Commission for Economic, Commercial, Scientific and Technological Cooperation (CIC), chaired, on the Brazilian side, by the Secretary-General of Foreign Affairs, and on the Russian side, by the Deputy Minister of Economic Development.
In 2002, relations between the two countries were eleveted to the level of strategic partnership. Since then, as bespoke by the frequent meetings at the ministerial and presidential levels, there has been an increasing approximation in the dialogue on a wide range of fields, whether in a bilateral or international forums such as the UN, BRICS and the G20. In 2010, the Strategic Partnership Action Plan was signed, setting objectives, aims and guidelines for bilateral relations.
The participation of Brazilian research institutions in the Russian satellite navigation system, GLONASS, emphases bilateral aerospacial partnership. Brazil is the largest host of the GLONASS system outside Russia. It has two reception stations at the University of Brasília, one at the Federal University of Santa Maria and another station at the Technological Institute of Pernambuco. In April 2017, at the facilities of the National Astrophysics Laboratory, in the Pico dos Anjos Observatory, in Itajubá, Minas Gerais, the Russian monitoring station of space debris was inaugurated.
Cooperation in science, technology and innovation is also worth highlighting, given the growing level of combined efforts between innovative institutions in Brazil and its Russian counterparts. In December 2018, three Brazilian science parks visited Moscow with the aim to create ways for the internationalisation of Brazilian startups in Russia. This initiative was part of Itamaraty's Innovation Diplomacy Program, which has fostered the creation of the BRICS Network of Parks and Incubators for Technological Businesses.
Russia is one of Brazil's largest trading partners. Bilateral trade flow amounts to US$ 5 billion annually. In 2018, Brazilian exports to Russia amounted to US$ 1.66 billion, while imports totaled US $ 3.37 billion. Bilateral trade between Brazil and Russia is highly concentrated in agrobusiness-related products. On the Brazilian side, meat, sugar, tobacco, coffee and soybeans are responsible for most of the trade, while Russia has in fertilizers the main export product to Brazil.
The bilateral agreement for the exemption of short-stay visas has been in force since 2010, which has contributed to increase the flow of tourists between the two countries.
Chronology of the Bilateral Relations
1828 – Diplomatic relations are established (October 3)
1876 – Private visit of Emperor Pedro II to Saint Petersburg
1917 – Brazil breaks diplomatic relations with Russia as a result of the non-recognition of the Bolshevik government
1945 – Brazil restores diplomatic relations with the Union of Socialist Soviet Republics after the end of World War II
1947 – Break in diplomatic relations during Eurico Gaspar Dutra's presidency
1958 – Trading relations are restored during Juscelino Kubitscheck's presidency
1961 – Diplomatic relations are restored during João Goulart's presidency
1988 – President José Sarney visits the Soviet Union
1997 – The Brazilian-Russian High-Level Cooperation Commission (CAN) is created
1999 – First Meeting of the Intergovernmental Commission for Economic, Commercial, Scientific and Technological Cooperation (CIC), (Brasília, April 23-24)
2000 – Fisrt CAN Meeting (Moscow, June 21-25)
2001 – Second CIC Meeting (Moscow, September 25-26)
2001 – Second CAN Meeting (Brasília, December 12)
2002 – President Fernando Henrique Cardoso visits Russia. Bilateral relations are elevated to a Strategic Partnership
2004 – Vice-President José Alencar visits Russia
2004 – Visit o President Vladimir Putin to Brazil, the first one of a Head of State from the Russian Federation. The "Technological Alliance" between both countries is established.
2004 – Third CIC Meeting (Brasília, February 18-20)
2004 – Third CAN Meeting (Moscow, October 11-12)
2005 – President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva visits Russia (October 18)
2005 – Fourth CIC Meeting (Moscow, October 3-4)
2006 – Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov visits Brazil (December)
2006 – Fourth CAN Meeting (Brasília, April 4)
2008 – First Meeting of BRIC's Foreign Ministers, in Yekaterinburg (May)
2008 – President Dmitry Medvedev visits Brazil (November 25-26)
2008 – The Short-stay visa waiver agreement is signed.
2008 – Fifth CIC Meeting (Brasília, November 17-18)
2009 – President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva visits Russia on the occasion of the First BRICs Summit, in Yekaterinburg (June)
2010 – President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva visits Russia. The Strategic Partnership Action Plan is signed (May)
2010 – Sixth CIC Meeting (Brasília, October 7-8)
2011 – Vice-President Michel Temer visits Russia. The Fifth CAN Meeting (May 16) and the Seventh CIC Meeting (May 17) are held in Moscow
2013 – Defense Minister Serguey Shoigu visits Brazil (October 16-17)
2013 – Eighth CIC Meeting (Brasília, November 8)
2014 – President Vladimir Putin visits Brazil and takes part in the 6th BRICS Summit, in Fortaleza (July 14)
2017 – Tenth CIC Meeting (Brasília, May 22)
2019 – The President of the State Duma, Vyacheslav Volodin, visits Brazil (Brasília, January 1st ), for the inauguration of President Jair Bolsonaro