Exports to China earn Brazil a record-breaking trade surplus

Official data show that annual growth of 28 per cent in exports to China, its main trading partner, helped give Brazil a trade surplus of US$61 billion last year, its biggest yet.

Brazil exported goods worthUS$89.75 billion to mainland China, Hong Kong and Macao last year, and imported US$48.34 billion worth, 36.7 per cent more than the year before, according to figures given by the Brazilian Economy Ministry on Monday.

Brazil therefore had a surplus of US$41.41 billion in its trade with China, its only surplus with an important trading partner, the data indicate.

Exports to the European Union, the second-biggest market for Brazilian goods, were worth US$36.53 billion, the government figures show.

Separately, the Brazilian state-run news agency, Agência Brasil, reports that the value of Brazilian exports of beef to China increased last year, in spite of a three-month-long Chinese embargo on imports of Brazilian beef, imposed after two cases of atypical mad cow disease were detected in Brazil.