Brazil Ups Exports Target to US$ 135 Billion and Surplus to US$ 44 Billion

    According to estimates announced by the Brazilian Ministry of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade Brazil should export up to the end of the year US$ 135 billion. 

    The target for 2006 was US$ 132 billion, "but the result that has been taking place permits increasing the total by another US$ 3 billion," stated the Foreign Trade secretary at the ministry, Armando Meziat.

    According to Meziat, the export figures that are being reached "are due more to product price increases abroad than to greater quantities shipped."

    He said that the forecast is for prices to have risen by approximately 15% by year-end when compared to 2005, with the volume of exports rising just 6%.

    "There are reasons to commemorate," he stated, despite recognizing that substantial increases in export volumes only took place between 2002 and 2005.

    The secretary’s forecast is that Brazil should reach a trade balance surplus of US$ 44 billion in December. A few months ago, the ministry stated that the trade balance surplus should remain between US$ 40 billion and US$ 42 billion.

    To Meziat, the surplus this year "will only not be larger because there are forecasts for export volumes to remain leveled in the last quarter of 2006, which begins in October."

    The secretary minimized the possibility of negative trade balance effects if the crisis in the United States economy gets worse. He recalled that in the past Brazilian exports were turned mainly to the United States and Europe.

    Nowadays, however, according to the secretary, Brazil exports much more to the countries in Latin America, and has diversified sales to other continents.

    "If the American economy collapses, as it is the largest in the world, this would certainly affect the world as a whole, and the effects could consequently reflect on the Brazilian export market," stated the secretary.

    Brazilian bilateral trade in the last 12 months (exports plus imports) totaled US$ 214.7 billion. Exports in the 12 months ending in September reached US$ 130.4 billion and imports US$ 84.4 billion, with a trade balance surplus of US$ 46 billion.

    From January to September, exports exceeded the US$ 100 billion mark and imports reached US$ 66.7 billion. When compared to the same period in 2005, imports rose 24% and exports 16.8%.

    There has been a 24% increase in imports when compared to the same period in 2005 and a 16.8% in the case of exports, when considering the daily average.

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