In the first six months of 2009, Brazil exported 65.8 million pairs of shoes. The figure represents a reduction of 26.5% over the same period last year. Revenues have also decreased, from US$ 951.1 million in the first half last year to US$ 679.6 million this year, a reduction of 28.5%.
The four leading buyer countries, United States, United Kingdom, Argentina and Italy, purchased approximately 30% less.
The leading buyer was the United States, which answered to 25.8% of the sales volume, having bought 17 million pairs. The second largest buyer of shoes from Brazil was the United Kingdom, with 5.8% of the shipped volume, and 3.8 million pairs purchased.
The third in the list was Argentina, with a 5.4% share of total exports and 3.6 million pairs purchased. The fourth destination country was Italy, with a 4.3% share of Brazilian shipments, and 2.8 million pairs.
Brazilian imports of shoes, however, grew 11% in the first half this year compared with the same period of 2008. The country spent US$ 164.3 million on imports of shoes this year, as against US$ 148 million during the same period last year. Nevertheless, the import volume decreased from 20.6 million pairs to 19.8 million pairs. The average price of imported shoes was US$ 8.31, growth of 15.6%.
In the first half this year the Middle East imported 2.17 million pairs of shoes from BrazilÂ representing sales of US$ 20.3 million. Africa, bought 2.14 million pairs, equivalent to US$ 11.8 million, according to figures disclosed by the Brazilian Association of Shoe Manufacturers (Abicalçados).
The Middle East accounted for 2.99% of Brazilian shoe exports, in terms of value, and to 3.31% in terms of volume. Africa, in turn, answered to 1.75% in terms of value and 3.25% in terms of volume. The average price paid by the Africans for of a pair of shoes - US$ 5.55 - was much lower than that of shoes purchased by Middle Eastern countries - US$ 9.33.