Brazil Confident It Will Grow Above World Average

Meirelles The Brazilian economy is in a strong position to weather the financial crisis and will grow above the global average this year, Brazil's Central Bank President Henrique Meirelles said on Sunday in Portugal.

"We are in the process of reviewing our forecast but our estimate is that we will grow above the global average," Meirelles told journalists during a meeting of Ibero-American finance officials in Portugal.

He said Brazil's economy was in a strong financial position, with US$ 200 billion in international reserves. "This will allow the country to face scarcity of international finance," he said.

The government has said Brazil would grow 4% this year while economists think it may be closer to 1.5%.

"Brazil is confronting this crisis in a better position than in the past and more advantaged than many other regions of the world," he said.

Brazil was growing strongly but has been hit by the financial crisis as it experienced a sharp fall in the commodities it sells to the world, both in volume and prices.

However Meirelles said domestic demand which is a significant component of the country's economy, continued to grow.

Latin America's Finance ministers and Central Bank presidents have met over the weekend in Portugal to coordinate the region's position for the coming international G-20 summit to be held in London in a month's time.

The meeting is Ibero-American, since Spain and Portugal are also participating. However at G-20 Latin America will be represented by the three largest economies of the region Brazil, Mexico and Argentina. Spain and Portugal will not be present at the London summit.

Mercopress

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