Brazil’s economy is, without question, the economic engine that drives South and Latin America. Besides the futbol tournament currently underway and the Olympics slated for Rio in 2016, Brazil leads all South American countries in population and GDP.
They are also a country besieged by poverty, high taxes, crime and infrastructure challenges.
Brazil is the fifth largest county in the world, both in terms of population and geography and the seventh largest economy.
In May they posted a trade surplus of $712 million, beating analysts estimates of a $50 million loss.
Apex, Brazil’s export agency, has invited more than two thousand businessmen and women to the country to watch the World Cup and believes that the visit can result in contracts or business commitments that would add a $3 billion boost to the economy.
The largest port in Brazil is Santos, and they are challenged to keep their waterways dredged deep enough to to accommodate the largest container ships and bulk handlers carrying cargo.
Brazil’s President, Dilma Rousseff, has also been working to privatize the ports in a belief that it could better serve the country’s needs.
Selling into Brazil’s economy is a challenge for foreign companies, both in terms of getting their goods to market (ask any forwarder who has spent hours getting documents just right with their Brazilian partner to avoid an onerous penalty and unnecessary delays) and in getting through Customs and the federal and state tax systems.
In fact, in a dubious honor, Brazil’s tax code was deemed the most time-consuming to comply with in a survey of tax professionals. The list contains189 countries.
At the end of the day, they are a tremendous engine and developing and growing economy. Doing business is Brazil is something that companies should rely on the guidance of their local partners to help navigate the maze of regulations in order to have success.