Brazil And The Global Economy Essay

1804 words - 7 pages

Brazil is the largest economy in Latin America and has sought to become a significant economic power in the region. Brazil's goal been aided greatly by the countries recent radical change in economic priorities and its large agricultural and industrial sectors which have allowed it to become a major exporter of goods. The Brazilian government has been at the forefront of these reforms, taking an active role in negotiating trade agreements with other nations and organizations such as the European Union, the World Trade Organization and the United Nations. The Brazilian government has also been a strong advocate of using ethanol as a fuel. Brazil's economy is characterized by large and well-developed agricultural, mining and manufacturing sectors. The government's strategic use of these strengths has allowed Brazil to quickly become a significant economic power. In addition to the priorities of expanding Brazil's economy and taking a prominent role in the global economy as a major exporter of goods the Brazilian government must also look towards eliminating poverty and protecting its natural environment, which is a critical component in both local and international ecosystems.Historically Many political takeovers and coups have hindered Brazil's economic growth. During the mid to late twentieth century successive governments - both democratic and military dictatorships have pursued policies of self-sufficiency and sought to create a large industrial economy with the aim of minimizing Brazil's dependency on imports by substituting them with domestically manufactured goods. This large scale industrialization relied heavily on financial borrowings from other countries which caused a major foreign debt problem and made Brazil's economy very vulnerable to external shocks in the international market. The Brazilian government has attempted to reduce its total debt levels while also shifting as much of the debt as it could away from the foreign market and into the domestic market, this shift has reduced the vulnerability of the Brazilian economy to international financial crises.During the 1960s Brazil averaged 6 per cent annual economic growth which increased to an average of 9 per cent in the 1970s, making Brazil the second fastest growing economy at that time. Brazil's remarkable growth was hampered by external crises, causing it to fall to 2.7 per cent during the 1980s and fall again during the 1990s to a sluggish 2.2 per cent. Brazil's economic growth has picked up again reaching an average of 3.4 per cent between 2000 and 2007, but is still considerably lower than the average achieved by other developing countries - 7.2 per cent. This huge difference between in growth rates is due to Brazil's cautious approach to globalisation; while the economies of South-East Asia strongly embraced export driven development Brazil continued to focus on shielding its domestic industries from overseas competition and promote domestic industrialization. This strategy...

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