Brazilian Imports from Arabs Grow 33%. Exports Up 22%.

The Arab countries had 32.6% greater revenues from exports to Brazil in the first month of the year when compared to the same period last year. In January, Brazilian imports from the region resulted in revenues of US$ 376.8 million.

"This is good. It shows that we are not only concerned with selling, but also with strengthening trade,’ stated the president of the Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce, Antonio Sarkis Jr.

According to the secretary general of the organization, Michel Alaby, the main products that Brazil imports from the Arabs are oil, naphtha and phosphates, but the trade basket also includes products like food, textile products, cotton and chemical products.

In fact, suppliers of oil, like Algeria and Saudi Arabia, are at the top of the list of Brazilian suppliers among the Arabs. The Algerians had revenues of US$ 222 million with sales to the country in January and the Saudis US$ 122 million.

Other countries, however, like Jordan, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Yemen and Lebanon, have also been increasing their exports. These are, in order, the nations whose sales to Brazil grew most in January. "Brazil is paying greater attention to the Arabs in terms of import," stated Sarkis.

The Emirates rose from sales of US$ 147,000 in the first month of 2005 to US$ 929,000. Data about what products were sold in January have not been disclosed yet, but last year although naphtha for the petrochemical industry and diesel oil were the main items in the basket, other products like currants and cattle leather were among the ten products most sold by the Emirates.

Sales by Jordan grew from US$ 490 to US$ 602,000 and those from Lebanon from US$ 105,000 to US$ 247,000. Last year, Jordan supplied Brazil products like fertilizers, aluminum residues, medications and clothes. From Lebanon came superphosphates, marble and sweets. Oman and Yemen sold less than US$ 50,000.

The number of suppliers to Brazil also rose. While in January last year, 11 countries sold to Brazil, in the same month of this year, the total was 14. Apart from the countries mentioned above, Brazil also received products from Egypt, the Comoros, Libya, Morocco, Mauritania, Syria and Tunisia.

Exports

Exports from Brazil to the Arab world advanced 22.3% in January and reached US$ 388.8 million. Although the percentage of growth of imports was greater than exports, Brazilian sales to the Arabs were US$ 12 million greater than purchases of products from the region. That is, the trade balance generated a surplus for Brazil. The percentage of growth is considered satisfactory by the Arab Brazilian Chamber.

"We have started the year well. The target, however daring, has been exceeded," stated the president of the organization. The Arab Brazilian Chamber forecast is for an increase of 20% in Brazilian exports to the Arab market in 2006.

According to Sarkis, some countries have been presenting continuous and growing trade with Brazil, which means that national companies are gaining effective participation in the Arab market and are not only making sporadic sales.

According to Alaby, Brazil sells an expressive volume of commodities and ore to the Arab countries and the price of these products are rising. This influenced the increase in sales.

The main buyers of Brazilian products among the Arabs in the month of January were Saudi Arabia, US$ 82 million, followed by Egypt, US$ 74 million, the Emirates, US$ 73 million, Morocco, US$ 44 million, and Lebanon, US$ 13 million.

In percentages, the nations that most increased purchases were Iraq, Djibouti, Sudan, Qatar and Lebanon, in this order. Iraq imported US$ 8.6 million, Djibouti US$ 677,000, Sudan US$ 2.7 million, Qatar US$ 12.2 million and Lebanon US$ 13.5 million.

Anba – www.anba.com.br

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