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Brazil breaks historical record of trade balance surplus in April With US $ 26.48 billion in exports, trade surges 69.7% and reaches US $ 10.35 billion in the month

The month of April marked a record-breaking season in Brazilian foreign trade. Starting with the surplus of US $ 10.35 billion - the highest absolute value in comparison with any month of the year, considering the entire historical series that started in 1997 -, driven by a 67.9% growth in relation to April 2020. The largest surplus so far had been recorded in July last year, at $ 7.6 billion. Exports also hit a record, with an increase of 50.5%, totaling US $ 26.48 billion. In this case, the highest previous figure was that of August 2011, with US $ 20.08 billion.
Imports in the month, on the other hand, reached US $ 16.13 billion, an increase of 41.1%, with the fifth highest value for the months of April. Thus, the flow of trade rose 46.8%, reaching US $ 42.61 billion in the period, which also represents a record, but only for the months of April. The data were released on Monday (3) by the Foreign Trade Secretariat (Secex), of the Ministry of Economy.
Accumulated from January to April 2021, compared to the same period in 2020, the surplus is US $ 18.26 billion, with growth of 106.4%. The trade flow reaches US $ 146 billion, registering an increase of 20.7%. Exports grew 26.6% and totaled US $ 82.13 billion, while imports rose 14% and totaled US $ 63.87 billion.
According to Secex, the export for the four-month period was also the largest in the historical series for the first four months of the year. The trade balance was the second largest, behind only the 2017 surplus of US $ 19 billion, while the trade flow was the third largest for the period.
The growth of exports in April occurred in all categories, with a more expressive increase in the Extractive Industry, reaching US $ 6.46 billion (+ 73.2%). In Agriculture, sales reached US $ 8.23 ??billion (+ 44.4%) and, in the Manufacturing Industry, the brand was US $ 11.66 billion (+ 43.9%).
The undersecretary for Foreign Trade Intelligence and Statistics, Herlon Brandão, explained that this increase in foreign sales is due both to higher prices and to higher volumes. “Until March, the main factor that explained the increase in exports was the price. With the increase in quantities, this good result was achieved, with a record export value of more than US $ 26 billion in the year. ”
Agropecuária stood out, with a 35.8% growth in quantity in relation to April 2020, especially in soy sales. Shipments of the oilseed rose 17% and reached a record of 17.4 million tons, allowing a result that was also helped by the 22.3% price increase in the month.
“We have a recovery in world demand, prices of important products in the Brazilian export basket are on the rise, in addition to the concentration of soy shipments. We had a late harvest this year, which caused shipments to increase further in March and April, to the detriment of February and January. Even so, we have a record harvest and a heated world demand, which made this product stand out ”, explained Brandão.
Destinations and origins
In relation to destinations, sales to China increased by 55.1%, but Brandão pointed out that the increase was registered for the whole of Asia, like Japan, which bought 36% more from Brazil last month. For the countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the increase was 53% and, for Korea, 43.6%.
In April, Brazil also sold more to Argentina (+ 88.2%), totaling US $ 900 million, while to the United States (+ 33.7%) it was US $ 2.32 billion and to the European Union ( + 37%) sales totaled US $ 3.45 billion.
Herlon Brandão recalled that, in January, Secex released a “more modest” forecast - of 5% in the growth of exports for the year - due to a scenario of uncertainty in relation to the effects of the health crisis, the rate of vaccination and consumer behavior . With the results of the first three months, the projection was revised to US $ 266.6 billion of exports in the year, which would be an annual record.
“This latest projected result showed an increase of 27%. The growth in the four-month period, so far, is 26.6%. So, this projection for the first quarter anticipated this good result in April. As much as we may find it surprising, it is within what has been predicted so far and, for now, there is no reason to believe that this expectation will change, ”he said.


Mr. Alessandro Jacob speaking about Brazilian Law on "International Bar Association" conference

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