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27/03/2017 - 18:40hs

Trade surplus hits USD 1.6 billion

Exports from Brazil increased by 0.4% on average per business day last week, even though foreign sales of meats weathered a blow.

São Paulo – Brazil ran a trade surplus in the fourth week of March, despite the blow that was dealt to meat exports by the Federal Police’s meat industry probe Operation Carne Fraca. The Brazilian Ministry of Industry, Foreign Trade and Services reported a USD 1.602 billion surplus, the result of USD 4.453 billion worth of goods exported and USD 2.851 billion imported.

Exports averaged USD 890.6 million a day last week, up 0.4% from the three preceding weeks. The Ministry underscored a 3.9% increase in foreign sales of basic goods such as grains, iron ore, precious metal ash and residue and raw honey, which made up for a 15.5% drop in exports of semi-finished goods including raw sugar, ferroalloys, semi-finished iron and steel, leathers and hides, and unprocessed aluminum, and for a 0.7% drop in finished goods exports, driven by weaker sales of flat-rolled iron and steel, fuel oils, hydrocarbons and their halogen-based products, aluminum oxides/hydroxides, and cast iron pipes.

Meat exports averaged USD 50.5 million last week, down 19% from USD 62.2 million in the three preceding weeks. Poultry made up 60% of total meat sales from Brazil last week, with beef at 27%, pork at 10%, and tripe and offal at 3%. Brazil shipped meat to 108 countries, the biggest buyers being Saudi Arabia at 12% of total sales, Russia at 10%, and Hong Kong at 9%. The UAE accounted for 6% of meat exports from Brazil, with Egypt at 4%.

Brazil’s imports slid by 3.4% on average to USD 570 million in the fourth week of March. The Ministry said the drop was driven by weaker purchases of customer electronics, mechanic equipment, fuel and lubricants, plastic and its products, aircraft/aircraft parts, and optics and precision instruments.

Month-to-date, exports reached USD 15.982 billion and imports reached USD 10.525 billion, leading to a USD 5.457 billion surplus. Year-to-date, Brazil saw a USD 12.736 billion surplus from USD 46.363 billion in sales and USD 33.627 billion in purchases.

*Translated by Gabriel Pomerancblum

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