We have been a reader-supported blog since 2014. We want to keep this blog as open as possible and that’s the reason we don’t have a subscription fee. You know best whether our work is of value to you or not. If it is, and if your circumstances allow it, we could use your help to carry on for another year: Help Diplopundit Get to Year 10 ⚡️
Posted: 2:59 am ET
U.S. Mission Brazil announced the opening of the new U.S. Consulate in Porto Alegre. The new consulate, located at 1889 Assis Brasil Avenue – Passo d’Areia, started offering services to American citizens on June 5 and non-immigrant visas on June 8. The new post covers the consular district of Rio Grande do Sul. The consulate says it supports engagement with Brazilians living in the south of the country.
“The U.S. presence in Porto Alegre is designed to improve the relationship with Brazilians in the South of the country, as part of the efforts of the United States diplomatic mission to expand bilateral trade and investment, strengthen relations between the two countries, facilitate travel, foster educational and cultural exchange and promote economic development.”
The Consulate’s new Principal Officer, Julia Harlan assumed office in Porto Alegre this month. The brief announcement notes that the official opening ceremony for the consulate will take place at the end of June.
U.S. Mission Brazil now includes the U.S. Embassy in Brasilia and the following constituent posts: U.S. Consulate General Recife;
U.S. Consulate General Rio de Janeiro; U.S. Consulate General São Paulo; U.S. Consulate Porto Alegre and
the American Presence Post in Belo Horizonte.
Mission Brazil (embassy and constituent posts) is the 4th largest visa issuance post in 2016 (after China-Mainland, Mexico, and India), accounting for 503,642 nonimmigrant visa issuances or 4.9% of total nonimmigrant issuances in FY2016.
U.S. Consulate Porto Alegre also notes the following:
A Relationship Almost 200 Years Old
In 1822, the United States was the first country to recognize an independent Brazil, and by 1835, the United States established a consular agency in Rio Grande do Sul. Initially situated in the city of Rio Grande, the agency facilitated trade between the United States and Brazil and provided services to American merchants in the bustling port. In these initial years, as Porto Alegre was under siege during the Ragamuffin War, Rio Grande served as the temporary capital of the region. In 1918, after the First World War, the consulate moved to the re-established capital of Porto Alegre, where it remained until 1996. During this period, the Consulate resided in five different commercial spaces throughout the city. In 2017, the Consulate re-opened in a new, modern facility designed to best support American Citizens living in the area and contribute to the thriving relationship between the United States and southern Brazil.
A History of Cultural Exchange
The United States has enjoyed a long history of cultural exchange with the southern states of Brazil. Porto Alegre’s Binational Center, which opened in 1938 and is one of Brazil’s oldest centers, remains an important partner for promoting cultural and educational exchange. Porto Alegre’s center went on to serve as a model for many future centers built across Brazil. In the 1980s and early 1990s, Porto Alegre welcomed many influential American thinkers and writers, promoting the shared values of the two nations. Simultaneously, hundreds of influential Gauchos visited the United States through State Department-funded exchange programs. Among them were Brazil’s first female Supreme Court justice, Ellen Gracie Northfleet, renowned author Érico Veríssimo, and Eva Sopher, who led the renovation of Theatro São Pedro. The U.S. Consulate in Porto Alegre supports the continuation of this notable history.