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Brazil lifts visa requirements for Canadians in attempt to boost tourism

FILE -- Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro.
FILE -- Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro. Getty Images

The Brazilian government on Monday waived visa requirements for visitors from the United States, Canada, Australia and Japan, a measure to boost tourism that was first temporarily adopted before the Rio Olympics in 2016.

The Canadian government recommends travellers heading to Brazil exercise a “high degree of caution” due to high crime and gang-related violence.

READ MORE: Canadians heading to Europe will soon face more travel restrictions — here’s what to know

Brazilians still need a visa or an electronic travel authorization to enter Canada.

The exemption published in the government’s official gazette coincides with President Jair Bolsonaro’s visit to Washington this week.

Bolsonaro, a far-right politician who succeeded a leftist who at times had a frosty relationship with the United States, arrived in the country with a half-dozen ministers and a goal of expanding trade and diplomatic co-operation between the two largest economies in the Western Hemisphere.

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He was expected to meet Tuesday with President Donald Trump to discuss a range of issues, including ways to increase U.S. private-sector investment in Brazil and ways to resolve the political crisis in Venezuela.

The U.S. government is not planning to reciprocate with a visa exemption for Brazilians, according to officials with knowledge of the matter.

— With files from the Associated Press