Brazilian exports to the Arab countries generated almost US$ 9 billion from January to November this year, an increase of 40% over the same period in 2007, according to information disclosed by the Ministry of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade. In November alone, shipments totaled US$ 856.5 million, 51.5% more than in the same month last year.
In the accumulated result for the year, total Brazilian foreign sales grew 25.75%, whereas in November there was strong deceleration, with growth of just 5% over November 2007, reflecting the reduction of international consumption due to the crisis. Exports to the Arab world, however, continued rising.
"The Arab market is a partner market and has great liquidity at a moment in which the rest of the world is still suffering due to lack of credit," stated Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce president Antonio Sarkis Jr. "It is at a time like this, in which global trade is losing strength, that people notice how exports to the region are growing," he added.
The main destinations for Brazilian products in the Arab world this year are Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Algeria, Morocco, Bahrain, Libya, Jordan and Qatar. The markets that grew most were Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Libya, Oman, Syria, Yemen, Tunisia and Algeria.
The expansion of purchase of small countries in the Gulf, like Bahrain, Kuwait and Qatar, calls great attention, and they are among the main destinations.
"This shows what the Chamber has been saying for years: the Arab market requires certain patience to win, but when businessmen believe in the work and maintain relations, it is at a difficult time like this that the Arabs show they are very good partners," said Sarkis.
He pointed out that the greater participation of these countries and others in the trade balance is a consequence of the diplomatic and trade promotion efforts made by Brazil in recent years. Apart from participation in business fairs and trade missions -Â many organized by the Arab Brazilian Chamber -Â Sarkis pointed out the constant visits to the region by representatives of the highest echelon of the Brazilian government.
Imports of products from the Arab countries totaled almost US$ 10 billion from January to November, growth of 75.41% over the same period last year. In November alone, foreign purchases totaled US$ 671 million, a reduction of 16.8% over November 2007, caused by the great reduction in the price of oil, the main item in the basket.
Bilateral trade, the total of exports and imports, was close to US$ 19 billion in the accumulated result for the year, growth of 56.4%.