Exports from Brazil generated US$ 160.65 billion in 2007, exceeding the government forecasts of US$ 155 billion in foreign sales for the year. There was a 16.6% increase in comparison with the value for 2006. Imports, in turn, grew 32%, almost double, and reached US$ 120.61 billion. The figures were disclosed Wednesday, January 2, by the Brazilian Ministry of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade.
With greater expansion of foreign purchases, the Brazilian trade surplus dropped almost 14% in comparison with the total for 2006, to US$ 40.04 billion.
Bilateral trade, which is the total of exports plus imports, totaled US$ 281.23 billion in 2007, or 22.7% more than in the previous year. All the figures, except for the trade balance surplus, were record, according to the ministry.
Manufactured products answered to foreign sales of US$ 84 billion, basic products for US$ 51.6 billion and semi-manufactured products for US$ 21.8 billion, and the shipments of all categories grew: 27.6% for basic, 11.4% for manufactured and 11.2% for semi-manufactured products.
Among manufactured products there were more expressive increases in the exports of oil (52.7%), frozen orange juice (47.3%), aircraft (45%), engines and generators (28%), pumps and compressors (14.5%), plastic polymers (12.2%), cargo vehicles (9.5%) and car parts (7.5%).
In the case of basic products the largest increases were in corn grains (317.2%), chicken meat (43.7%), tobacco leaves (28.9%), crude oil (28.7%), soy chaff (21.8%), soy grain (18%), iron ore (17.5%), pork (17%) and coffee grain (14.9%). Among semi-manufactured products the highlights were for iron alloys (74.7% growth), pulp (21%), leather and hides (16.3%) and cast iron (13.6%).
With regard to destinations, according to the Ministry of Development, there has been an increase in exports to the main economic regions, mainly to the European Union, which posted growth of 29.7%, followed by countries in the Mercosur (which includes Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay, as well as Brazil – 23.6%), Asia (19.4%), Africa (14.6%), the Middle East (10.9%), Eastern Europe (10.3%), the countries in the Latin-American Integration Association (Aladi) except for the ones in the Mercosur (8.5%) and the United States (1.8%).
In the area of imports there has also been growth in all categories of products, with consumer goods in the first place, with growth of 33.2%, followed by capital goods (32.4%), fuels and lubricants (31.6%) and intermediary and raw materials (30.7%).
There has been expansion in the purchases of products from the main regions, like the European Union, which expanded sales to Brazil by 92.1%, Africa (39.1%), Asia (33.3%), the EU (31.8%), the Mercosur (29.2%), the United States (27%), Aladi excluding Mercosur (21.7%) and the Middle East (0.9%).
In December alone, Brazilian exports generated US$ 14.24 billion, 16% more than in the same month in 2006. For the fourth consecutive month, the daily average of foreign sales was above US$ 700 million.
Imports totaled US$ 10.6 billion, growth of 47% in the same comparison, resulting in a trade balance surplus of US$ 3.64 billion, 28% less than in December 2006.
The Development Ministry pointed out the expressive growth of exports to non-traditional markets or the ones with a small share of the trade basket, among them some like Sudan, which imported the equivalent to US$ 5.9 million in December, an increase of 264% over the same period in 2006, Libya (US$ 20.5 million, 200% more), Kuwait (38.7 million, 105% growth), Egypt (US$ 107 million, 101% expansion) and Oman (US$ 12.2 million, up 72%).