Costa Rica Exports Up in 2016

Original article: The Tico Times

Sales abroad of Costa Rican products grew by 8 percent last year, while exports of services saw a 12 percent increase, according to an official report released Monday.

Officials from the Foreign Trade Ministry (COMEX) and the Foreign Trade Promotion Office (PROCOMER) noted that figures represent 98 percent compliance with the country’s export goals for 2016.

Foreign Trade Minister Alexander Mora said at a press conference that officials are very satisfied with these results, as Costa Rica achieved the best export performance in Latin America. Average export figures recorded last year both in the region and worldwide are negative 6 percent.

“Costa Rica’s results, by comparison, are actually very successful,” Mora said.

Costa Rica’s exports of goods accounted for $9.9 billion last year, up from $9.2 billion in 2015, COMEX reported.

Minister Mora and PROCOMER General Manager Pedro Beirute attributed the positive result to exporters’ efforts to diversify goods and destination markets.

PROCOMER in 2014 launched a social media campaign to encourage local companies to start selling their products abroad. The campaign dubbed “Queremos productos Ticos” (“We want Tico products”), and showed videos of Costa Ricans living abroad describing which Tico products they missed the most.

Mora said positive results in the goods sector was achieved mainly by strong sales abroad of agricultural products that accounted for 27 percent of total exports. Sales of precision and medical devices, as in recent years, also maintained a solid performance and accounted for 26 percent of the total.

Positive sales in both sectors also got a boost from a 14 percent increase in sales from free-zone based companies, the COMEX report noted.

Exports of agricultural products increased by 9 percent from 2015, driven mostly by an 18 percent growth in sales of bananas, and a 9 percent growth in pineapples.

Services exports

Foreign Trade officials said data on exports of services is only available up to the third quarter of 2016. Figures, however, showed an inter-annual growth of 12 percent.

Exports of services during the first nine months of 2016 accounted for $6.1 billion, up from $5.4 billion recorded in the same period during 2015, COMEX report stated.

Companies in the travel sector totaled $2.7 billion, representing a 15 percent increase from the previous period, and those in the business services sector recorded $1.7 billion, or 14 percent more.

Exports of telecommunication, information and IT services accounted for $786 million, representing a 4 percent increase, while the transport sector totalled $333 million, or 18 percent more from 2015.

Minister Mora said that COMEX does not rule out the possibility that Costa Rica could meet or even surpass annual export goals when data is included from all quarters, expected to be available in April.

By regions

Aside from efforts to diversify markets, the positive performance recorded last year reflect increases in sales to the country’s most important markets.

Sales to European Union countries increased by 15 percent, while sales to North American countries — mainly to the United States — rose by 10 percent.

The country also recorded a 3 percent increase in sales to Asian markets, and only recorded a 0.1 percent decrease in sales to the Central American countries.

Minister Mora said that in order to keep up the growing trend, trade authorities are targeting their efforts to improve sales of Tico products in Asian markets, mainly in China.

Contact L. Arias at larias@ticotimes.net

Mamones Chinos A Costa Rica Fruit Treasure

costa rica mamon chino fruit

Mamones chinos are starting to fruit for the 2014 season. Que rico!

Costa Rica is home to hundreds of fruits, and in particular, the Osa Peninsula’s weather patterns provides the perfect environment for growing mamones chinos. I love mamones chinos as much as guanabana’s. The main advantage of mamones chinos versus guanabana is the ease of eating.

What is a ‘mamon chino‘?

A mamon chino is a fruit that grows on trees (most fruits do grow on trees but a few don’t) and is harvested once a year. To eat one, you simply pluck it off the tree, rip the skin of with your teeth, which will generally open in two or three large pieces, then eat the sweet, white fruit. There is an almond-like seed in the middle of each fruit, so you have to eat and suck off the fruit from the seed. Once you are finished eating the fruit you spit out the seed.

Eating mamones chinos will definitely get your hands sticky and they are a bit messy to eat as the easiest way to eat them is with your hands and utensils will not help.

The name of the fruit tells you a lot about the food. mamon is from the word mamar, meaning ‘to suck’. Chino comes from “China”. Therefore, the ‘mamon chino’ is the Chinese sucking fruit.nick halverson mamon chino

We’ve planted several in Las Villas de San Buenas, and just this last weekend one of our customers requested that we plant a couple
near his home. It takes a couple of years after planting for it to start producing fruit.

Nick Halverson
CEO, Las Villas de San Buenas
nick@villassanbuenas.com



 

Costa Rica’s Exports Up 9 Percent

Costa Rica’s Exports Up 9 Percent / Daily News / News / Costa Rica Newspaper, The Tico Times.

The Foreign Trade Promotion Office (Procomer) announced Wednesday that Costa Rica’s exports have increased 9 percent this year when compared to the first nine months of 2009. From Jan. through Sept. of this year, the country has raked in over $7 billion in sales, compared to $6.5 billion at this point last year.

Procomer reports that 75 percent of all exports are industrial products, 23 percent agricultural products and 2.4 percent fish and livestock. Industrial exports accounted for $205 million more in 2010 than last year, boosted primarily by a 96 percent increase in the export of electric cables and a 36 percent increase in both tires and electrical switches and breakers. Microprocessors and other electric components continue to bring in the largest amounts of revenue, accounting for over $1.4 billion in sales so far this year.

Regarding food and agricultural products, the export of bananas, pineapples and coffee – historically among Costa Rica’s leading exports – all improved, led by a 23 percent increase in the shipping of bananas. In addition to these principal exports, sugar sales abroad have increased a whopping 217 percent, jumping from $23 million in 2009 to $74 million this year.

The majority of Costa Rican exports (41 percent) in 2010 were shipped to the United States, while 12.4 percent have gone to the European Union. Since 2008, exports to the EU have increased 5.9 percent.