The Ceará economy has posted excellent results for growth so far this year with the increase in GDP ahead of the national rate. The figures, together with large-scale investment from foreign companies, mean that there’s widespread optimism in the state. Analysts expect up to 6% growth this year as the Ceará economy leads the way.
Strong growth in April
The Brazilian Central Bank recently published the nationwide statistics for growth in April. The Ceará economy saw one of the strongest year-on-year increases with an 11.78% rise. In monthly terms, economic activity went up by 3.34%.
The figures stand out in Northeast Brazil where regional economic growth stood at 7.16% in the year and 1.12% compared to March. Between January and April, Ceará saw a 2.56% increase in GDP.
Q1 growth ahead of Brazil generally
Quarterly results for Ceará also put the state ahead of many regions in the country. The 1.14% GDP growth exceeded the national figure (1%) as has been the underlying trend.
Industry posted the best results in the state. Between January and March, the sector grew by 7.17%. The statistics indicate the recovery of the Ceará economy as it puts the pandemic behind it.
Predictions for Ceará economy in 2021
The solid figures for the first quarter of the year, particularly in the industrial sector, lead analysts to expect a good year for the state’s economy. Based on April’s results, the regional economic council (Corecon) expects GDP growth of between 5.5 and 6% by the end of 2021. The increase will again exceed the national rate, predicted to be around 5%.
The right ingredients
Pecem Port and its industrial complexes are among the main engines behind the strong economic growth in Ceará. The deep-water port has excellent infrastructure and this added to the state’s air connections and strategic location makes Ceará a focal point for foreign investment.
The state also has one of Brazil’s healthiest financial balance sheets and a reputation for sound economic management. Both factors have served Ceará well in attracting both Brazilian and international companies to the state.
Large-scale foreign investment
High-level meetings with state government officials reportedly take place on an almost daily basis as Ceará makes its mark on the international investment scene. The state already has a Digital Belt and the Computer Hub. The latter includes the installation of 16 underwater fibre-optic cables that connect Ceará with Europe, Africa and the US.
Earlier this year, two Australian companies earmarked over US$10 billion for investment in a green hydrogen plant at Pecem. The renewable energy installation will be joined by a desalination plant, another major foreign investment in Ceará.
As an editorial in the state broadsheet, Diario do Nordeste, says, the Ceará economy has the wind behind it in 2021.
(Sources: Banco Central de Brasil, Corecon, Diario do Nordeste)