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Exports from Latin America and Caribbean to Asia-Pacific down 22%

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Staff writer ▼ | November 25, 2015
In the first half of 2015, the value of exports of goods from Latin America and the Caribbean to Asia-Pacific dropped by 22% compared to the same period of 2014.
Brazil export
Trade   Only Brazil and Chile achieved trade surpluses with Asia-Pacific
This is according to the Latin American and Asia Pacific Observatory of the Latin American Integration Association (ALADI).

The value of regional imports of goods from Asia-Pacific registered a 4.1% increase compared to the same period of 2014. As a result, the trade deficit that the region has with Asia-Pacific grew from $37,000 million to $66,000 million, approximately.

South Korea and Japan are among the main destinations for exports in the Asia-Pacific region and also reported the lowest declines. Meanwhile, shipments to China and other Asia-Pacific countries recorded drops of up to 25%.

Meanwhile imports registered a 2.7% growth in China and purchases from Japan in the region recovered compared to to the same period last year; however, imports from Korea dropped by 19%.

It is worth noting that China is the main single partner of the region and that the sharp drop in exports to this Asian country, according to the study, is mainly due to the low prices of the commodities exported to Asia, such as oil, copper, iron and soybeans, among others.

The greatest decreases in the value of exports to Asia-Pacific were recorded in Colombia and Venezuela, with drops reaching 73% and 51%, respectively. Other countries that registered considerable drops were Brazil (-18%), Peru (-14%), Mexico (-13%) and Chile (-9%).

Looking at the soybean exporters, Argentina slightly increased its shipments in the first half of the year; however, Paraguay and Uruguay registered drops in their exports to that region.

Ecuador and El Salvador were two of the few countries in Latin America and the Caribbean which recorded increases in exports to Asia-Pacific.

"The origin of exports to the Asia-Pacific region continues to show a high degree of concentration," says the report. In the first half of the year, 93% of exports were shipped by only six countries (Brazil, Chile, Venezuela, Mexico, Argentina and Peru).

Brazil, for example, accounted for 39% of all regional exports to Asia-Pacific and for 46% of those to China.

Only Brazil and Chile achieved trade surpluses with Asia-Pacific; meanwhile, the largest deficits were for Mexico and Colombia.