Brazil's exports yielded US$ 10.104 billion in February, a 15.5% increase compared with the same month last year. Imports amounted to US$ 7.226 billion, a 21.4% increase. The trade balance recorded a US$ 2.878 billion surplus.
The data were published today, March 1st, by the Brazilian Ministry of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade.
In the accumulated result for the year, foreign sales reached US$ 21.065 billion, 16.9% more than in the same period in 2006.
Foreign purchases, on the other hand, amounted to US$ 15.696 billion, an increase of 26.6%. The trade balance for the first two months of the year recorded a US$ 5.369 billion surplus.
Brazilian agribusiness exports yielded US$ 50.263 billion between February 2006 and January 2007. According to information disclosed earlier this month by the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture, this is the first time ever that foreign sales for the sector surpassed US$ 50 billion within a 12-month period. There was a 14.4% increase compared with exports made between February 2005 and January 2006.
According to the Ministry, the sectors that most influenced this performance were sugar and alcohol, with a 70.7% increase in exports; forestry products (10%); coffee (17%); fruit juice (41.7%); leather and leather artefacts (15.4%); and cereals, flours and preparations (154.9%).
Over the last twelve months, imports yielded US$ 6.818 billion, a 30.6% increase compared with the period ranging from February 2005 to January 2006, resulting in a US$ 43.445 billion surplus in the agribusiness trade balance.
In January 2007 alone, still according to the Ministry of Agriculture, agribusiness exports reached US$ 3.772 billion, a 28.7% increase compared with the same month in 2006. Imports, on the other hand, stood at US$ 611.7 million, a 25.1% increase, resulting in a surplus of US$ 3.16 billion for the first month of the year. According to the Ministry, both the exports and the trade balance hit record highs for January.
The products that influenced the export basket the most were sugar and alcohol, for which exports grew by 113.2%; fruit juices (133.5%); coffee (41.6%); and meats (13.5%). In absolute terms, the meat sector ranked first, with US$ 715 million in exports. Raw meat alone answered to US$ 260 million, 39% more than in January 2006. Foreign sales of sugar and alcohol yielded US$ 693 million in January.
Among the markets that grew the most in January, the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture highlighted the Middle East, which saw a 75.8% increase in imports, the European Union (37.9%) and Africa (30.5%).