As a Country, Sí£o Paulo City, Brazil, Would Be the World’s 47th Largest

São Paulo's downtown skyscrapers on the foreground If São Paulo city, in southeastern Brazil, were a country, it would be among the 50 largest economies in the world: in 47th place, ahead of Arab countries like Egypt, Kuwait and equal to New Zealand. This comparison was made by the Federation of Commerce of the State of São Paulo (Fecomércio-SP), in a study prepared to celebrate the 454 years of the largest city in South America, on January 25th.

The organization took into consideration the GDP of the city in 2005, US$ 102.4 billion – that of Egypt for the same year was US$ 89.3 billion and Kuwait's, US$ 80.8 billion.

"The idea of this analysis is to show the relevance of the city to the world," explained the economic advisor at the Fecomércio, Júlia Ximenes. Another comparison in the study was made considering the United States, the largest economy in the world: the GDP of São Paulo is ahead of that of 22 American states.

"Of course it is necessary to consider the difference between the countries. Comparing a city of 11 million inhabitants in a developing country to New Zealand, a small country, with a strong economy and a small population (4 million) is complicated. But it is valid to show the grandeur of the city," said Júlia. "Using the GDP in dollars is a way of proving this grandeur empirically."

The analysis also shows blatant figures. If, on the one hand, they show that the city of São Paulo has the power of a country, on the other hand they show the abyss between the city and the rest of Brazil.

In one of the comparisons, the Fecomércio study shows that the GDP of the city of São Paulo was equal to 94% of the GDP of all the states in the northeast of Brazil. And it is greater than the GDP of all the other Brazilian states, except the state of São Paulo, of which it is the capital. If the city of São Paulo were a state, it would be 37% richer than the state of Minas Gerais.

"The study may be read in two ways. It shows the importance of the city of São Paulo to the economy of Brazil. After all, it is an industrial, commercial, educational and cultural hub, etc. On the other hand, it shows how the country grows in an unequal manner," explained the Fecomércio economic advisor.

In 2005, the year chosen by Fecomércio for the study, São Paulo contributed with at least 4.3% of the GDP of Brazil with regard to taxes, or 90 billion Brazilian reais (US$ 51 billion) in taxes. On the other hand, the total budget from the federal government that the city received was 15 billion reais (US$ 8,5 billion).

The analysis also brings curious figures and numbers about the city. There are 38,000 bars and restaurants in São Paulo. In the city that is marked by Italian colonization, approximately 40,000 pizzas are made per hour.

And in the city where there is the largest Japanese colony outside Japan, some 16,800 sushis are made per hour. São Paulo is also known for its immense Arab colony, especially the Syrian-Lebanese. And for the Spanish, Portuguese, etc. The numbers of events are also superlative. There are 70,000 cultural events per year, being 4,800 theater plays.

Apart from that, the city concentrates nine of Brazil's ten largest magazine publishers, three of the five main newspapers and 98 of the 200 largest technology companies in the country and the largest medical and hospital center in Latin America.

Anba – www.anba.com.br

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