China forecast to be Brazil's top trade partner
Updated: 2008-07-10 18:25

Brazil is aiming to make China its biggest trade partner, according to a Brazilian trade official on Wednesday, adding his country wants to triple its China exports to $30 billion in 2010.

Welber Barral, Secretary of International Trade with Brazil's Ministry of Development, Industry and Trade, said the country was seeking more trade opportunities with China and a larger market share for its products in the mainland market.

"Trade between Brazil and China has been rapidly expanding in recent years and we hope to keep the same, even faster growth," he said at a seminar.

China is now Brazil's third biggest trade partner, while the latter is China's top trade partner in Latin America.

Sino-Brazilian trade volume soared 10-fold between 2000 to 2006, mostly in the fields of farm produce and raw materials, Barral said.

There remained huge potential for the two countries to expand the scale and optimize the trade structure, said China's Vice Minister of Commerce Ma Xiuhong at the seminar.

"We can complement each other a lot in science and technology, industry, agriculture and natural resources."

Brazil's official figures show its China exports totaled $10.75 billion in value in 2007, with imports from China reaching $12.62 billion. It was the country's first annual trade deficit with China in a decade.

Trade volume between the two countries hit a record $29.7 billion last year, 46.4 percent up year on year, according to China's Ministry of Commerce.

On July 4, Brazil launched a China Agenda program aimed at boosting bilateral trade and to encourage more Chinese investment in Brazil.

"We are looking forward to investment by Chinese enterprises in various sectors of Brazil, especially in infrastructure and logistics," said Miriam Belchior, executive secretary of Brazil's Growth Accelerative Program.

The Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency was also opening a China office in September, said agency president Alessandro Teixeira.

Brazil has invested $250 million in China while Chinese enterprises have invested $150 million in Brazil, according to China's Ministry of Commerce.

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