BRASILIA, Brazil - Brazil has shown a marked increase in foreign investment over the last year, pushing it from sixth to 4th in the rankings of the main destinations for foreign investment in the world.
According to a report released Monday by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), Brazil received $75 billion in external investment last year, compared to $60 billion in 2018.
The United States topped the list, attracting a quarter-of-a-trillion dollars, while China came in second with $140 billion.
Singapore was 3rd with $110 billion.
South America as a region attracted $120 billion, with the lion's share of that going to Brazil.
The 25 percent increase in external investment in Brazil in 2019 is reported to have partly stemmed from the country's privatization program, which focused on the sale of subsidiaries of state-controlled companies and government shares at private firms.
For this year, the document says the country should continue to receive foreign investment, as privatization efforts continue. "In 2020, divestment in subsidiaries of state-run companies should gain momentum; the privatization of major companies, like Eletrobras, Latin America's biggest electricity company, and Telebras, will probably attract a lot more direct investment from overseas," the text reads.
In addition to privatization plans, the study mentions projects linked to environment as factors helping boost foreign investment in Brazil this year. "Preliminary data on greenfield investment unveiled in the country confirm this outlook, with project values more than doubling compared to 2018, especially for renewable energy and the automotive industry," UNCTAD pointed out.
President Jair Bolsonaro tweeted that the fourth place on the ranking represents the restoration of confidence in the country.