Brazil Exits Recession With 4.6% Growth in 2021

Brazil’s economy returned to growth in last year’s fourth quarter at a stronger pace than expected as farm output boomed.

Growth in the fourth quarter increased 0.5 percent from the previous quarter, bringing the gross domestic product (GDP) to grow 4.6 percent in 2021, official data showed. Brazil’s economy contracted 3.9 percent in output in 2020.

A sharp increase of 5.8 percent in agricultural output during the fourth quarter fueled the growth, after a 7.4 percent drop in the prior quarter.

However, instability over President Jair Bolsonaro’s expected election showdown with ex-president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and international turmoil due to the conflict in Ukraine poses a difficult time for Brazil in 2022.

“Uncertainties around the country’s political future are making things unpredictable and will delay strategic decisions on the economy… And external issues will weigh down global GDP, and Brazil’s along with it,” economist Gilberto Braga of business school IBMEC told the AFP News Agency.

Brazil’s industrial output fell 1.2 percent in the fourth quarter while services activity expanded 0.5 percent, according to the government.

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