According to a recent report by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) the region is experiencing a significant increase in exports, with Venezuela and Colombia leading the way.
Venezuela and Colombia’s Export Success Drives Growth in Latin America
The report titled “Prospects for International Trade in Latin America and the Caribbean 2022” predicts that the value of the regional merchandise exports will increase by 20% in 2022, driven by a 14% increase in prices and a 6% increase in volume.
The Commission also found that the value of regional imports of goods will increase by 24%. This growth is largely due to the price component with countries such as Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia and Brazil experiencing the largest increases in the region.
Exports grew by 63% in Venezuela, followed by 49% in Colombia, 32% in Ecuador, 31% in Bolivia and 22% in Brazil.
Overall, Latin America and the Caribbean saw a 20% increase in exports with the Caribbean alone experiencing a 43% increase and South America a 23% increase.
Meanwhile, Central America saw a 16% increase in exports. These figures highlight the significant progress being made in the region and the potential for further growth in the future.
Exports of goods from the region grew at a double digit rate for the second year in a row, rising 27 percent year on year. Despite this growth, it was mainly driven by external factors such as the increase in the price of commodities, especially fuel, rather than an improvement in the volume of exports or the diversification of the region’s export offer into new sectors.
According to the report, the region’s trade in services rebounded significantly growing by 45 percent in the first half of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021. This rebound was largely driven by the revival of tourism, followed by other services including modern services.
The growth of the main trading partners of the region varied with exports to the European Union showing the strongest growth at 26% in 2022. Exports to China on the other hand, grew by only 8 percent, the first increase since 2015.
The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) has warned that global trade will continue to slow due to the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, high inflation, lower growth, geopolitical tensions and the persistence of the pandemic. As a result the volume of trade is expected to grow by only 1% in 2023.