We can speak of Brazilian trade only since 1808, when the ports of Brazil were opened to all ships in the world, while before all exchanges were carried out exclusively through Portugal. But development was at first very slow: in the five-year period 1840-1844 the annual average of foreign trade did not reach 100,000 contos di reis, and imports exceeded exports by one third (54,000 contos and 41,000 respectively); 30 years later, the overall movement had an average of 352,000 contos, but exports were higher than imports (159,000 and 193,000 contos, respectively). In the first five years of the century. XX the annual average of the total trade reached almost one million and a quarter of contos, with 474 thousand contos for import and 760 thousand for export. After 1905,
The following table shows, taking them from the publications of the Federal Directorate of Commercial Statistics, the figures for the five-year periods and the relative annual averages from 1901 to 1925: for the values the figures in thousands of pounds are given since the fluctuations of the Brazilian paper money were in that period, for various reasons, very strong.
Both imports and exports show an increase throughout the period: only in the years 1916-20 did imports undergo a contraction as a result of the European war, but began to rise again in the last five years. Always higher than the value of imports was that of exports: in all the twenty-five years considered, in just three years the trade balance was unfavorable, marking a deficit of 1,715,000 pounds in 1913, 17,484,000 in 1920 and 1,888,000 in the 1921. For Brazil 2002, please check commit4fitness.com.
The states of the Confederation contribute to varying degrees to the total of international exchanges; Brazilian statistics provide data for individual ports. Rio de Janeiro holds first place for imports while Santos is first for exports: the coffee trade which has its main market in Santos explains this supremacy of the great Paulistan port. An interesting comparison can be made between annual trade in the last pre-war five-year period (1909-13) and in the first post-war five-year period (1922-26), provided it is borne in mind that while Brazil mainly imports heavy and relatively low-priced raw materials (coal, iron, cement, timber, raw jute etc.
With regard to the composition of Brazilian trade in the two aforementioned five-year periods we can observe: the export of coffee remains almost stationary (12,650,000 bags of 60 kg., 13,700,000); while that of rubber, due to competition from the markets of Southeast Asia, is reduced to less than a quarter from the first to the second period, decreasing the annual total from 39,200 tons to about 21,240 tons. On the other hand, together with that of cocoa which is doubled (from 31,650 tons to 61,450 tons) and with that of cotton which is more than doubled (from 18,000 tons to 36,900 tons), the export of tobacco shows a significant increase. which increases by about a third (from 26,650 tons to 34,450 tons).
The order in which the states are followed with respect to the maximum and minimum of the export, does not vary significantly in the two quinquennîs particularly considered, at least as far as we can judge from the statistics that provide the data of the internal states of Goyaz and Minas Geraes. In fact, S. Paolo, Rio de Janeiro and Bahia follow each other in descending order, and Matto Grosso and Rio Grande do Norte, in ascending order, in both periods. Thus, the order of the states to which the maximum (Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Rio Grande do Sul) and the minimum of imports (Piauhy, Sergipe, Rio Grande do Norte in the period 1909-1913, and Sergipe, Piauhy, Matto Grosso in that 1922-26). On the other hand, the increase in exports and imports varies greatly between the various states. While exports slightly decreases in Rio Grande do Norte and has a very slight increase in Matto Grosso and a slight increase in the states of São Paulo and Alagôas, it quintuples in Ceará, quadruples in Maranhão, triples in Rio Grande do Sul, doubles in the Espirito Santo. Thus, while importation decreases by 9 tenths in Amazonas, by more than three quarters in Pará, in Maranhão, in Sergipe, it almost multiplies in Pernambuco, increases by almost half in Piauhy, by more than a fifth and by less than one tenth, respectively, in the states of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.
As for the exchanges between Brazil and Italy, it should be noted that in the first quarter of the century, the goods exported from Brazil to Italy reached an approximate value of 63 million pounds, and those imported from Italy to Brazil, the value of around 39 million pounds. The war period profoundly changed the relationship between export and import, in the sense that in the pre-war period the trade balance closed with a balance in favor of Italy a little higher than 11 million pounds, while in the war and post-war period (1919- 1925) the balance closes with a balance in favor of Brazil, of about 35 million pounds. In the’ 1926 Brazil imports more than 2100 tons of cocoa into Italy (almost the twentieth part of the cocoa imported into France) about 2300 tons of frozen meat compared to 26.000 in 1928, more than 2400 tons of rubber (less than half of the imported in France and almost the third part of that in Germany), and 35,000 tons of coffee (while in France 107,000 tons were imported in that year and 42,000 in Germany). In the same year 1926, Italy imported into Brazil more than 830 tons of raw hemp and hemp yarn, more than 520 of cheese, more than 400 of olive oil, 200 of tomato paste, and more than 115,000 hectoliters. of wine in barrels and 13,000 in flasks, as well as 650,000 bottles of Marsala and vermouth and about 650,000 bottles of wine and 400,000 of liqueurs.
In 1926 the Italian export to Brazil reached the value of 295 million lire, of which about the thirteenth part was represented by cars in number of 791 cars, while in 1923 222 were exported.