HomeTop StoriesThe Brazilian economy grows by 2.9% in Lula's first year, exceeding expectations

The Brazilian economy grows by 2.9% in Lula’s first year, exceeding expectations

SAO PAULO (AP) — Brazil’s economy grew 2.9% in 2023, exceeding expectations in the first year of President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s administration, the government’s statistical institute said Friday.

The figure announced by the IBGE impressed many economists, whose general forecast early last year was that growth in 2023 would be only 0.8%.

Brazil’s economy grew 3% in 2022, partly thanks to then-president’s government spending programs Jair Bolsonaro amid his failed re-election bid.

Credit rating agency Austin Ratings said Brazil’s economy is now the ninth largest in the world, based on preliminary gross domestic product figures released on Friday. With a GDP of $2.17 trillion last year, the South American country left Canada and Russia behind, the report said.

Brazil’s statistics agency said record production of soybeans and corn in Brazil contributed to the overall results.

“Agriculture represented about a third of all growth in the Brazilian economy last year,” said Rebeca Palis, coordinator at IBGE, in a statement.

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The government said after the results that it expects growth to reach 2.2% in 2024, which would again be above market expectations. Lula has said in public forums that he wants to push the figure above 3% this year by attracting more foreign investment to Brazil.

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