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Montevideo, May 23rd 2018 - 22:18 UTC

China/Latam trade expanded 8% in 2012 and region’s deficit jumped to 6.6bn

Wednesday, May 22nd 2013 - 18:00 UTC
Full article 5 comments
China has become the main trading partner of most Latam countries China has become the main trading partner of most Latam countries

Latin America's trade deficit with China jumped to 6.6 billion dollars last year from only 150 million in 2011, according to an analysis by online publication Latinvex based on new data from the IMF. Total trade between China and Latin America grew 8% last year to 255.5bn which means the region’s trade with China is growing faster than with the United States, 6.2%.

However, Chinese exports to Latin America grew at twice the rate as its imports from the region. China's exports to Latin America grew 10.7% to 131bn, while imports increased 5.3% to 124.5 billion dollars.

Venezuela led the way in Latin American growth of exports to China and imports from the Asian country in real terms. In percentage terms, three of the top four trade growth winners are from Central America (Honduras, Costa Rica and Nicaragua). And when it comes to Latin American exports to China, the top three countries in percentage increases are from Central America (Nicaragua, Guatemala and Honduras).

Meanwhile, Brazil and Mexico remain China's top trading partners in Latin America, but both saw a slight decrease in their exports to China due to the slowdown of the Chinese economy last year.

China's trade with Venezuela, its fourth-largest trade partner in Latin America, grew by 5.7 billion last year to 23.7 billion. That was the largest increase in real terms. Chinese exports to Venezuela grew by 2.8 billion, also the largest growth in real terms and the second-largest increase in percentage terms (43.3%).

Venezuelan exports to China grew by 2.9 billion to 14.4 billion, the largest increase in real terms in Latin America and the largest in percentage terms among China's top five trade partners.

Last year was not a fluke, but cemented a growing trend in Chinese-Venezuelan trade. In 2010, Chinese exports to Venezuela were 3.6 billion, or three times less than last year. Venezuelan exports to China that year were 6.6 billion, or less than half of last year's levels.

China's trade with Brazil reached 85.5 billion, an increase of 1.16% from 2011. That was the fourth-worst performance in Latin America last year. However, that means China remains Brazil's top trading partner, ahead of the United States (which traded 75.8 billion of goods with Brazil last year), according to Latinvex.


Tags: China, Latam.

Top Comments

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  • ChrisR

    And now it begins in earnest.

    If anybody doubted that the Chin would own SA in the long term they had better look away now: the road roller is coming!

    If Uruguay is anything to judge by most of the Chinese stuff is cheap and absolute junk, clothing especially. Why they bother importing it is beyond me, they have much better locally produced items at slightly more in cost but they do last many times over.

    That is the problem though, I suspect that many Uruguayo think price is everything and cannot understand that paying slightly can be much better value. That is certainly the case with local builders and you have to keep your eyes on what they are doing, because they don’t.

    I am very fortunate that I have found a guy I can trust and a barraca (builders merchants) who not only speak excellent English but allow me to run an account that the builder can draw on until the project is finished.

    May 22nd, 2013 - 06:27 pm 0
  • Gustbury

    Uruguay & Paraguay are inverted at the picture..assholes!!

    May 22nd, 2013 - 09:44 pm 0
  • JoseAngeldeMonterrey

    Key in these statistics is to understand the whats and the hows of the China´s equation in the the region: what does China buy from our countries? it´s mostly raw materials, crops, minerals and metals. What does China sell in Latam? mainly consumer goods, added-value manufactured products, electronics. It´s a colonial relationship with China, they have the upper hand on this trade relationship to their very advantage. This is a disgrace when Latam nations should be focusing on producing higher-valued products to export to the US and Europe and compite versus China, South Korea and other countries quickly industrializing at the expense of resource-rich nations like Brazil.

    May 23rd, 2013 - 12:43 am 0
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