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LatinNews Daily - 02 September 2021

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In brief: Brazil sees record trade surplus in August

* Brazil’s economy ministry has released the latest figures on trade, which show that the country recorded a US$7.7bn trade surplus in August, a record for that month since the historical series began in 1989. This represents a 31.7% increase on the US$5.8bn trade surplus recorded in August 2020, which at the time set a new record for the balance of trade in the month of August. Overall trade flows totalled US$46.8bn in August this year, with a 49.2% year-on-year increase in the value of exports, to US$27.2bn, and a 34.4% increase in imports, to US$19.5bn. Herlon Brandão, the deputy secretary for foreign trade intelligence and statistics, noted that this strong result is due to both an increase in the volume of exports and high commodities prices internationally. Exports grew in value across all main sectors, including the extractive industry (up 124% compared with August 2020, to US$9.2bn), manufacturing (up 39% to US$13.1bn), and agriculture and livestock (up 24% to US$4.7bn). In the case of agricultural exports, the volume of exports actually fell 6% compared with last year, with notable drops in coffee and maize exports, but high prices buoyed the final result.