Bilateral trade between the two regions has experienced significant growth over the past five years. The volume of trade has grown steadily to 8.38 billion U.S. dollars in 2008-13225000 dollars in 2012. The largest trading partners in Latin America are Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Peru, Colombia, Panama, Venezuelaand Costa Rica. (To view trade statistics for each country, click on the name).
The main products imported fromThailand are components for automobiles, home appliances, food and canned fruit and processed seafood. Recently, dyes, rubber and their products, synthetic fibers, steel, medical equipment, toys and sporting goods fromThailand are enjoying a growing popularity in Latin American markets. At the same time,Thailand imports soybean and oil plants from Brazil andArgentina and copper from Chile.
In an attempt to increase trade and investment between the two regions, discussions were held in order to promote various trade agreements and treaties. The Free Trade Agreement finalized withPeru, became the first FTA with a country in Latin America and is currently in negotiations withChilefor a new FTA which will contribute significantly to increase trade relations between the two countries.
Investments of Latin American countries in Thailand are increasing. Currently the Argentinean company SEDESA has a plant in Ayutthaya province. Mexican companies such as Cemex Co., Methalsa of metallurgy industry and KidZania of edutainment have invested in Thailand, while Brazil has a wiring production plant. Chile exported and distributed in Thailand their finest wines and Peruvian company Aje Thai Co. has chosen Thailand as a base for the production of his soda Big Cola. This trend reflects the confidence and interest in Latin American countries in positioning Thailand as gateway to Southeast Asian markets, a market of over 600 million consumers.
At the same time open up new opportunities for Thai investors who want to start a business in Latin American countries, where new investments in sectors such as hospitality, construction, wood processing industry and exploration of oil and natural gas are welcome. A clear example is the Indorama Ventures plant in Queretaro, Mexico.
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