The real growth in revenues of the Brazilian industry in February increased 1.5% compared with January. It was the highest growth rate since July last year. Hours worked increased 1.8%.
According to Brazil's National Confederation of Industries (CNI), the expansion of industrial activity is being accompanied by creation of new job positions. In the first two months this year, job vacancies grew 5%, in comparison with the same period of 2007.
According to the Industrial Indicators disclosed on April 3 the use of the sectors' installed capacity went from 83.1% in January to 82.9% in February. According to the CNI technicians the result shows that production capacity grew, "as a consequence of the maturing of investment made over the course of 2007."
The growth of imports at a higher rate than exports in Brazil is mostly due to purchases of machinery and equipment – which indicates that industries are benefiting from the value of the dollar, currently worth approximately 1.70 Brazilian reais, to expand their production capacity. This according to Brazil's Foreign Trade secretary at the Ministry of Development, Welber Barral.
Average daily purchase of capital goods increased 69.7% last month compared with March last year, up from US$ 91.2 million to US$ 154.7 million. During the same period, the daily import average rose from US$ 435.6 million to US$ 580.1 million, growth of 33.2%.
Despite being influenced by automobiles for which average daily imports grew 76.6% in a 12-month period, purchases of consumer goods grew at a lower rate than those of machinery. Average daily imports of consumer goods grew 32.4%, from US$ 61.3 million to US$ 81.2 million. The volume represents less than half the growth in purchases of capital goods.
To Barral, the results show that Brazil is taking advantage of the moment, which is favorable to imports, in order to invest in expanding domestic production. "Ever since imports started to rise, purchases of capital goods have been increasing by more than 50% compared with the same month of the previous year," he claimed.
Brazil plans to increase wheat production to 7.1 million tons up to 2012. The intention is for national production to answer to 60% of consumption. The proposal is part of the Five Year Plan for Support to Wheat Farming, which is being discussed by representatives of the wheat sector productive chain and of the government.
The theme was discussed at the 18th ordinary meeting of the Sector Chamber of the Productive Chain of Winter Cultures, which took place on April 1st in Brazilian capital Brasília.
According to the Trade and Supply director at the Agricultural Policy Secretariat at the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Supply, José Maria dos Anjos, the measures proposed to increase the volume of wheat production should dampen the demand for imports.
Last year Brazil imported around 6.6 million tons, mainly from Argentina. Another theme discussed at the meeting was the establishment of a hub for production of wheat in the country, to contribute to expansion of the crop, mainly in the case of irrigated wheat.