Brazil’s Minister of Finance, Antônio Palocci celebrated the economy’s “surprising” growth and pointed out that last year’s growth figures are meaningful, since they show that the Brazilian economy is vigorous and able to make the adjustment it did without a downturn in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Data compiled by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) and released yesterday (November 30) reveal that the economy grew 0.5% in 2003, countering previous statistical findings which indicated a -0.2% result.
The IBGE also discovered that in the first nine months of this year, the GDP measured in market prices increased 5.3% compared with the corresponding period the year before. The cumulative rate for the January/November period was the highest in a decade.
Palozzi emphasized that these figures are significant, because they show that the major adjustment introduced by the government last year had a smaller negative impact than previous figures had indicated.
“A 0.2% loss in the GDP was foreseen in consequence of last year’s adjustment and the crisis in 2002, but, now, in light of the IBGE’s definitive numbers, it can be seen that the sacrifice was 0.7% less than what was previously claimed. We experienced a 0.5% improvement,” the Minister said.
The Minister went on to say that this GDP result raises two important questions. One is that Brazil was able to introduce a large-scale adjustment, when compared with a dozen other countries that endured similar crises in 2002.
This suggests a very vigorous economy, capable of making such an adjustment with no loss in GDP.
“This is an important bit of information for an economy with a history of vulnerability. Thus, we can confirm that since 2003, Brazil’s effort has had an extremely positive outcome.”
The second question, according to Palocci, is that, in light of last year’s positive GDP, the foundations for this year’s positive figures are more solid.
“This shows that the pickup in growth in 2004 is more vigorous.”
Translator: David Silberstein