Contrary to foreign forecasts from multilateral organizations forecasts, Brazil’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ended 2021 with a 4.6% growth, totaling 8.7 trillion (about US$ 1,7 trillion at the current rate). The country managed to recover from the slowdown of 2020 when the Brazilian economy shrank 3.9% because of the pandemic.
Data was provided by the Quarterly National Accounts System, released by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE). According to the survey, economic growth was driven by expansion of the services sector (4.7%) and industry (4.5%). On the other hand, agriculture contracted 0.2%.
According to the coordinator of National Accounts at IBGE, Rebecca Palis, all service sector activities thrived in 2021, particularly transport, storage, and shipping (11.4%). Passenger transport rose considerably, especially at the end of the year, with people returning to travel. Information and communications also increased (12.3%), driven by the internet and IT development.
IBGE also points out the performance of construction as the positive highlight in the industry sector, which after falling 6.3% in 2020, advanced 9.7% in 2021. Investments rose 17.2%, boosted again by construction, which in the previous year had a decrease, and by the domestic production of capital goods.
Agriculture, which expanded in 2020, dropped 0.2% in 2021 due to drought and frost. “Despite the annual growth in soybean production (11.0%), important crops recorded declines in estimated production and loss of productivity during 2021, such as sugarcane (-10.1%), corn (-15.0%), and coffee (-21.1%),” said Palis. In livestock, there was also a modest reduction in cattle and milk production.
Based on the latest release of IBGE data, Brazilian per capita GDP reached BRL 40,688 (some US$ 8,060); a 3.9% increase compared to the decline experienced the previous year, -4.6%.