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Brazil's Expoflora: Showcasing Flowers and Dutch Traditions

The largest flower and ornamental plant show in Latin America is held in a quaint small town founded by Dutch immigrants that is the heart of Brazil's flower industry.

Welcome to Expoflora, complete with an incongruous Dutch windmill greeting visitors at the entrance of the giant flower exhibition center, a two hours' drive from Sao Paulo.

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In Body-Conscious Brazil, Half Are Now Overweight

One of the world's most body-conscious countries, Brazil is now threatened by growing obesity rates, with half of the population already overweight.

As a result of an unbalanced diet and a rise in more sedentary lifestyles, Brazil, which moved 30 million people out of poverty and into the middle class over the past decade, is paying a heavy price for its frenetic growth.

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Brazil Abortion Stirs Controversy

A Sao Paulo court allowed a woman to abort a four-month-old malformed fetus despite Brazil law only granting abortions in cases of rape or when the mother's life is in danger, local media said Sunday.

In this case, the fetus was diagnosed with Edwards syndrome, a genetic disorder that is the second most common autosomal trisomy after Down syndrome, the daily Folha de Sao Paulo reported.

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Brazil Bids to Become World's Third IT Market by 2022

Brazil hopes to capitalize on the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics to advance its goal of becoming the world's third largest information technology and communications (ITC) market, a top industry official says.

"We are today the fifth largest ITC market in the world, (worth) $210 billion dollars," Antonio Gil, president of the Brazilian Association of Information Technology and Communication Companies (Brasscom), told Agence France Presse in an interview Monday.

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Brazil to Deploy World's First Floating Oil Terminal

Brazil's state-owned energy giant Petrobras said Tuesday it will deploy the world's first floating oil terminal capable of refueling tankers on the high seas.

"The new technology will ensure lower costs, by reducing the distance covered by oil transport vessels," the company said in a statement.

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Booming Middle Class Fuels Brazil Beauty Market

The beauty industry is booming in Brazil, where meticulous manicures, sophisticated scents and impeccable make-up are a must-have for women who have made the country the sector's world number three.

Last week, Sao Paulo hosted "Nails Fashion Week" -- where about a dozen domestic and foreign brands are offering up the latest trends in nail color as well as stilettos, make-up and eyewear in a bid to seduce new customers.

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Paraguay Threatens Argentina, Brazil on Energy

Paraguay's new President Federico Franco is talking tough with Argentina and Brazil, threatening not to "give away" energy to his neighbors and instead use power generated by joint projects at home.

"When are Brazil and Argentina going to respect us? When the government tells them, 'Actually, we are going to use our own energy. Paraguay is changing its position. It is no longer going to give away its energy'," Franco said.

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Brazil Braces for 'Trial of the Century'

Dozens of former party and government officials go on trial Thursday in Brazil's biggest corruption scandal, which could tarnish the ruling Workers' Party (PT) and its popular ex-president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

The 38 defendants set to appear before Brazil's Supreme Court in what the press here has billed "the trial of the century" are ex-ministers, lawmakers, businessmen and bankers linked to an alleged vote-buying scheme in Congress between 2002 and 2005.

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Eight Killed in Brazil's Private Plane Crash

A private twin-engine plane crashed in the southeastern Brazilian state of Minas Gerais Saturday, killing all eight people aboard, firefighters said.

The Beechcraft King Air B200GT, which took off from the Minas Gerais capital Belo Horizonte, exploded after it went down near the airport of Juiz de Fora, a city located 260 kilometers away, they told the media.

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Brazil's Menezes Wins Historic Women's Judo Gold

arah Menezes made history by becoming the first Brazilian woman to win an Olympic judo gold medal when she triumphed in the under-48kg category here on Saturday.

The second-seeded Menezes dethroned reigning champion Alina Dumitru of Romania in the final.

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