Brazil's Federal Government Downsizes Personnel and Expenses

Restrictions on hiring and increased pensions have lead to unprecedented reductions in civil servants and expenses

São Paulo

The federal public machine, which includes ministries, foundations and regulatory agencies, in addition to bodies such as the INSS, IBGE, IBAMA and Incra, is going through an unprecedented phase of downsizing.

Today there are 208,000 statutory civil servants. In the last three years, only 11,600 servers were hired. The replacement rate is the lowest in the Brazilian historical series.

At its peak, in 2007, there were 333.1 thousand civil servants, entitled to stability and an automatic career progression plan, according to data from the federal government.

The decrease has quickened in recent years, with the approval of the spending ceiling, in 2015, and with the Jair Bolsonaro government, which restricted hiring and froze the salaries of civil servants. Spending on active employees is falling.

The salaries and charges of active and inactive federal civil servants this year total R$335.4 billion, R$2 billion less than in Bolsonaro's first year.

The machine's shrinkage accelerated during the course of the Social Security reform, approved in 2019, which led to a wave of retirements.

In the last seven years, the number of inactive has increased from 384.2 thousand to 426.5 thousand.

Translated by Kiratiana Freelon

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