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First quarter totals USD 240.9 million in footwear exports

Data prepared by the Brazilian Footwear Industries Association (Abicalçados) indicates that 32 million pairs were exported in the first quarter of 2020, generating USD 240.9 million. The figures represent decreases both in volume (-8.5%) and in revenues (-9.4%) in comparison with the same period last year. Considering only the month of March, 8.9 million pairs were shipped abroad, generating USD 74.2 million, a 2% decrease in pairs and an 11.2% decrease in revenues in relation to the same month in 2019.

Abicalçados' executive president, Haroldo Ferreira, highlights the global crisis due to COVID-19, which reduced the international demand for non-necessity goods, such as shoes. "We felt the first results of the pandemic in January, given that Asian and European countries had already been impacted since the beginning of the year. In March, besides Brazil itself, our main destination, the United States, also started to suffer with the coronavirus, resulting in decreased consumption in that country," he assessed.

Sales to the U.S. market, which had already been decreasing in recent months, decreased even more in March. In the quarter, 2.8 million pairs were shipped, generating USD 47.7 million, 28.9% and 12.6% decreases, respectively, in relation to the same period in 2019.

Other destinations
The second destination of Brazilian shoes during the quarter was Argentina. The country purchased 2.4 million pairs that totaled USD 25.6 million, 35.2% and 19.1% decreases, respectively, compared to last year.

The third destination during the period was France, where 2.2 million pairs were shipped to for USD 15 million, decreases both in volume (-23.3%) and in revenues (7.5%) in relation to the same period in 2019.

Exporting states
The main exporter of Brazilian shoes during the quarter was the state of Rio Grande do Sul. The state shipped 7.55 million pairs, generating revenues that amount to USD 103.4 million. However, these results represent a 5.8% decrease in volume and a 12.2% decrease in revenues compared to the same period last year.

The second-largest exporter during the period was the state of Ceará, from where 12.4 million pairs were shipped for USD 69.4 million, 12.6% and 11.8% decreases, respectively, in comparison with the first quarter of 2019.

Ranking third, São Paulo exported 2 million pairs, totaling USD 23.7 million. The figures represent a 13.4% increase in volume and a 2.6% decrease in revenues in relation to the total exported during the same period last year.

Imports
Footwear imports in Brazil increased in March.  The country received 3.7 million pairs, for which USD 34.3 million were paid, 34.1% and 45.5% increases, respectively, compared to the same month in 2019. This is also a result of China's need to redistribute its production in the foreign market given the decreased domestic demand. During the quarter, imports amounted to 9 million pairs for USD 103.7 million, registering a 0.6% decrease in volume and a 10.9% increase in revenues.

The main origins of imports during the quarter were Vietnam (3.5 million pairs and USD 60 million, 26.3% and 31.5% increases, respectively, compared to the same period last year); Indonesia (990 thousand pairs and USD 16 million, 24.5% and 17.7% decreases, respectively); and China (3.7 million pairs and USD 13.7 million, a 9.2% decrease in volume and a 5.2% increase in revenues).

In footwear parts – uppers, soles, heels, insoles, etc. – imports totaled USD 7.7 million, 17.9% less than in the first quarter of 2019. The main origins, in sequence, were China, Paraguay, and Vietnam.