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TerritoryManagement

IBGE releases updating of legal territorial divisions of Brazil

Section: Geosciences | Caio Belandi

July 14, 2022 10h00 AM | Last Updated: July 15, 2022 11h02 AM

  • Highlights

  • They are eight products related to the territorial divisions of Brazil for 2021: (a) Municipalities in the Borderland Strip
  • and Twin Cities; (b) Coastal Municipalities; (c) Municipalities Facing the Sea; (d) Metropolitan Areas, Urban Agglomenrations and Integrated Development Regions; (e) Brazilian Semiarid, (f) Area of Operation of SUDENE, (g) MATOPIBA and (h) Legal Amazon.
  • They are 588 Brazilian municipalities with their area either totally or partially located in the borderland strip, most of them in Rio Grande do Sul (194) and Paraná (139).
  • This year the list of 33 twin cities is being released as well, i.e., those side-by-side, though in different countries. Most of them (11) stay in Rio Grande do Sul and Mato Grosso do Sul (7).
  • The Municipalities Facing the Sea are 279, most of them in Maranhão (33) and Bahia (30). Altogether, they occupy an area of 251,315.67 km2, or nearly 2.95 % of the Brazilian territory.
  • The updating of the Metropolitan Areas, Integrated Development Refions (RIDEs) and Urban Agglomerations shows the creation of new Metropolitan Areas in the states of Santa Catarina (Joinville, North Plateau and Jaraguá do Sul) and São Paulo (São José do Rio Preto, Piracicaba, Jundiaí).
  • There are 81 metropolitan areas in Brazil and most of them are in Santa Catarina (14), Paraíba (12), Alagoas (9) and São Paulo (9). JThere are three Urban Agglomerations, one in São Paulo and two in Rio Grande do Sul.
  • Legal Amazon corresponds to 58.93% of the Brazilian territory, in nine states and 772 municipalities.
  • Information about Coastal Municipalities, Semiarid, Area of operation of SUDENE and MATOPIBA are being released as well.
IBGE publishes updating of the legal territorial divisions of Brazil, including the borderland strip - Photo: Ministry of Cities

The IBGE releases today (14) an updating of the legal territorial divisions of Brazil. Altogether, they are eight products revised in 2021: “Municipalities of the Borderland Strip and Twin Cities”; “Coastal Municipalities”; “Municipalities Facing the Sea”; “Metropolitan Areas, Urban Agglomerations and Integrated Development Regions”; “Brazilian Semiarid”; “Area of Operation of SUDENE”; “MATOPIBA”; and “Legal Amazon”.

“These divisions comprise administrative areas established by legislation or normative rules from other public institutions. The IBGE is committed to update them and provide statistics for them, due to their relevance for public policies,” explains Cayo Franco, IBGE´s manager of Geography.

The “Municipalities of the Borderland Strip and Twin Cities (2021)” publication shows that a total of 588 Brazilian municipalities have either the entire or part of their areas located in the borderland strip. The highlights are the states of Rio Grande do Sul (194) and Paraná (139). According to article 20, 2nd paragraph of the Federal Constitution of 1988, borderland strip is the 150 km-wide internal strip, parallel to the terrestrial borderline of the national territory.

In 2021, the total area of the borderland strip was 1,420,925.63 km2 (16.7% of the Brazilian area). The sum of the total areas of the municipalities that are either totally or partially within that strip adds up to 2,265,046.64 km2 (26.6% of the Brazilian area).

The publication also included the list of the 33 national twin cities, i.e., those side-by-side, though in different countries. Altogether, they are eight in the Central-West Region, being seven in Mato Grosso do Sul and one in Mato Grosso. They are nine in the North Region, most of them in Acre (four). The South concentrates 16 twin cities, highlighted by the leader of the national ranking, Rio Grande do Sul, with 11 or 1/3 of the total. “Such municipalities require specific public policies to meet the great potential of cultural and economic integration, as well as to face specific problems of neighboring cities,” explains Roberto Tavares, IBGE´s coordinator of Territorial Structures.

The Municipalities Facing the Sea (2021) product includes the area of the Patos Lagoon (RS), establishing 279 municipalities meeting Decree 5,300/04. Most of them are in Maranhão (33) and Bahia (30). Altogether, they comprise an area of 251,315.67 km2, corresponding to nearly 2.95% of the Brazilian territory.

The Coastal Municipalities (2021) division was also included in the annual updating. According to an ordinance, the Ministry of Environment is in charge of the list, which counted with the support of the IBGE to update it. To be included in the list of Coastal Municipalities, it is necessary to follow some criteria according to Decree no. 5,300, of December 7, 2004, like being located in a Coastal Metropolitan Area.

Other legal geographic divisions included this year and annually updated by the IBGE were “Area of Operation of SUDENE” and “MATOPIBA (2021)”. MATOPIBA is a region with a growing cultivation of grains, whose name is the combination of the initials of the States that comprise the Municipalities of the region: Maranhão, Tocantins, Piauí and Bahia, unchanged in 2021.

Lastly, “Area of Operation of SUDENE” comprises the states of Maranhão, Piauí, Ceará, Rio Grande do Norte, Paraíba, Pernambuco, Alagoas, Sergipe and Bahia, as well as some municipalities of Minas Gerais and Espírito Santo. In 2021, Complementary Law no. 185/2021 highly expanded the area, which incorporated 84 new municipalities and now adds up to 2,074 municipalities.

Santa Catarina and São Paulo gain new metropolitan areas

Another updating released today by the IBGE was in the “Metropolitan Areas, Integrated Development Regions (RIDEs) and Urban Agglomerations (2021)” publication, which includes the creation of new Metropolitan Areas (RMs) in the states of Santa Catarina and São Paulo.

In Santa Catarina, a complementary law created the RMs of Joinville, North Plateau and Jaraguá do Sul. In São Paulo, the RMs of São José do Rio Preto, Piracicaba and Jundiaí were established, terminating the Urban Agglomerations of Piracicaba and Jundiaí.

The RIDEs remained unchanged, as well as the other Metropolitan Areas. They were 81 metropolitan areas in 2021, highlighted by Santa Catarina, with 14, followed by Paraíba (12), Alagoas (9) and São Paulo (9). There are three urban agglomerations, being one in the state of São Paulo and two in Rio Grande do Sul.

The “Brazilian Semiarid” comprises 1,262 municipalities in the states of Maranhão, Piauí, Ceará, Rio Grande do Norte, Paraíba, Pernambuco, Alagoas, Sergipe, Bahia and Minas Gerais, which follow the following criteria: annual average rainfall equal to or lower than 800 mm; Thornthwaite Aridity Index equal to or lower than 0.50; and daily percentage of water deficit equal to or higher than 60%, considering every day of the year. It also remained unchanged in 2021.

Lastly, the “Limit of Legal Amazon (2021)” publication updates the area of 5,015,067.86 km2, corresponding to nearly 58.93% of the Brazilian territory (8,510,345.540 km2). Altogether, nine states and 772 municipalities form the Legal Amazon: Acre (22 municipalities), Amapá (16), Amazonas (62), Mato Grosso (141), Pará (144), Rondônia (52), Roraima (15), Tocantins (139) and part of Maranhão (181, of which 21 were partially integrated).

In spite of Maranhão being the state with the highest number of municipalities, only the areas of the municipalities located west of Meridian 44o are part of the Legal Amazon, of which 21 are partially integrated to the division.

The IBGE and the legal territorial divisions

The IBGE publishes the legal territorial divisions on an annual basis. The divisions are administrative areas established by legislation or normative rules from other public institutions. The updating of the divisions includes the changes in the limits and nomenclatures found in the “Territorial Division of Brazil 2021” and composition changes due to changes in the legal or normative instruments under the responsibility of the custodian bodies of these divisions. By updating the legal territorial divisions, the IBGE improves the production of surveys and statistics that provide the knowledge of Brazil.



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