The latest Ceara economic news shows the state performing well on a number of key fronts. These include tourism, retail, car sales, exports and wind energy. Analysts believe these indicators bode well for continued strong performance in 2017.
The state, along with the rest of Northeast Brazil, consistently outperformed Brazil as a whole between 2010 and 2015. The latest Ceara economic news points to a repeat of this performance in 2017.
Record exports from Ceara
At the top of the good economic news coming out of Ceara so far this year are exports. And the figures for January from Pecem Port are exceptional. During the first month of this year, exports doubled compared to those in January 2016 to reach a value of US$156.4 million.
Behind the huge hike are steel plaque exports, which accounted for US$59.8 million alone. This figure is expected to increase exponentially over this year as production of the plaques at the CSP steel plant move to capacity. Analysts forecast that Pecem Port will account for 12 per cent of the state GDP within the next four years.
Wind energy brings good Ceara economic news
Wind energy is a key sector of the Ceara state economy and like exports, this sector is also booming. In 2016, Ceara became the fourth largest state in Brazil in terms of the number of wind energy plants in production, behind just Rio Grande do Norte, Bahia and Rio Grande do Sul. Wind energy production increased by 22.6 per cent last year compared to 2015, despite the lack of auctions.
Further wind energy plants are under construction in Ceara with a total of 37 more planned for operation by 2020. These figures bring Ceara into third position in the national ranking. This vast increase in wind energy production in 2016 has placed Brazil in ninth position in the world, displacing Italy, according to the Global World Energy Council.
Retail sector grows in Ceara
Despite the fall in consumer spending, the Ceara retail sector managed to post positive economic figures in 2016. 72.6% more shops opened in the state than closed last year. The sector will receive an extra boost in April when the Centro Fashion Fortaleza opens. This huge retail centre with investment to the tune of R$100 million expects to take R$2.5 billion a year in wholesale and retail sales.
More good Ceara economic news came in the figures for car financing in January. The number of loans taken out for car purchases, one of the main indices of consumer confidence, rose by 8.8 per cent year-on-year. This contrasts markedly with the timid 2.8 per cent increase in Northeast Brazil and the 7.3 per cent decrease nationally.
Ceara tourism rides a high season wave
The recent high tourism season – Christmas, New Year and January – saw excellent visitor figures for Ceara. Fortaleza received over 1 million tourists and was the second most popular holiday destination in the Northeast and sixth in Brazil.
The forthcoming Carnival celebrations are also one of the busiest Brazil holidays in the year and Ceara ranks among the key destinations for Carnival. During the last week of February, the Brazilian Ministry of Tourism calculates that tourist revenue will total R$140.3 million in Ceara, one of the highest in the country.
The latest national tourism survey adds yet more good economic news for the state. The mid-February report carried out by the Ministry of Tourism found that 60 per cent of Brazilians planned to visit Northeast Brazil during this year.
“This latest Ceara economic news is extremely positive for the area,” comments Dies Poppeliers, Managing Director of BRIC Group. “We expect to see much more over the next few months as the region recuperates its economic power and moves forward.”
An investment company specialising in global real estate opportunities, BRIC Group is currently developing The Coral resort, in Northeast Brazil, a luxury beachfront resort. BRIC Group also offers US real estate investments including turnkey properties in Florida and Houston, and land plots in Florida. BRIC Group has been creating wealth for its clients since 1996 and has offices in Brazil, Dubai (consulting office), Hungary, Spain and the US.
(Sources: Diario do Nordeste, Brazilian Ministry of Tourism)