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Latin America: Brazil Top Japan Partner

Brazil replaces Panama as Japan’s top trade partner in Latin America.


The sun rose on
Japan’s trade with Latin America in 2010, with business warming by 40 percent to reach $66.7 billion, according to Japanese trade data analyzed by Latin Business Chronicle.

The growth was faster than Latin America’s trade gains last year with the United States, up 27 percent, and with the European Union, up 31 percent.  Yet China outpaced Japan in trade gains with Latin America, up 51 percent. China ‘s trade soared to nearly three times the value of Japan’s trade with the region last year.

For this year, Japan’s trade will be hurt by its March 11 earthquake and tsunami. Quake-battered Japanese factories reduced shipments to plants in Latin America that make Toyota cars, Honda motorcycles, Panasonic electronics and other goods. And some Latin nations including Brazil halted  imports of Japanese food, worried that damaged nuclear reactors could contaminate crops.

But the Land of the Rising Sun has a record of comebacks. In 2010, it posted trade...

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