Disney insiders say Brazil may be the next country added to Epcot’s World Showcase, which hasn’t had a new addition since 1988.
Theme Park Tourist, WDW News Today and Blog Mickey have all published rumors that the world’s fifth largest country by area and population will be added to Epcot. It would be the 12th pavilion and the first South American country in the World Showcase.
The new Brazil pavilion could be built on a 1.5-acre lot between the Italy and Germany pavilions, according to the bloggers.
Brazilians are the third largest international group to visit Florida, behind Canada and the United Kingdom. But recent economic and political turmoil in Brazil has brought a 10 percent drop in Brazilian tourists since 2014, according to Visit Orlando, the area’s tourism marketing agency.
Back in November, Bob Chapek, chairman of Walt Disney World Parks & Resorts said a major transformation was planned for Epcot but he offered no specifics.
“It will be even more relevant than it is today…,” said Chapek during a Destination D fan event. “And, at the same time, it will stay true to our original vision.”
Epcot opened in 1982 with nine countries in the World Showcase, including Mexico, the United States, China, Germany, Italy, Japan, France, Canada and the United Kingdom. There haven’t been many additions. Morocco was added in 1984 and Norway in 1988.
There are still nine undeveloped spots around World Showcase, which were left for future expansion.
Puerto Rico, Russia, Switzerland, Costa Rica, Spain, Venezuela, United Arab Emirates, and Israel have been rumored as potential future pavilions but never made it past the planning stages. The Israeli, Spanish, and an Equatorial Africa pavilion, including the cultures of countries such as Kenya and Zaire, were announced as coming soon in 1982, but never happened.
An announcement about Epcot’s transformation plans are expected July 14-16 at the D23 Expo in Anaheim, Calif.