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Brazil Affirms Its Investment Love Affair with Florida

Posted on the 19 November 2013 by Angelicolaw @AngelicoLaw

Brazilians love Florida. With its business-friendly policies, its affordable real estate, and its tropical weather, Florida is attracting an increasing number of Brazilian companies, entrepreneurs, investors, real estate buyers, and tourists.

Florida is truly a star. The state is home to 20% of all U.S. exporters, the headquarters of 300 regional and hemispheric international companies, and more than 5,700 foreign-owned facilities. Florida also commands 27% of the total U.S. trade with Latin America and the Caribbean.

One of the biggest success stories is the Brazil-based aircraft manufacturer Embraer. After opening its first executive jet factory in the United States in 2011, the company opened its Executive Jets Customer Center next door just a few months later. Embraer is now constructing a third building on the 13 acres it owns in Melbourne, Florida. This represents a $24.5 million investment in just over 5 years.

Brazilians Fuel Tourism in Florida

In 2011, Brazilian tourists outnumbered all other international tourists visiting Florida. That distinction was once held by the United Kingdom. According to tourist officials, more than 1.5 million Brazilians traveled to the U.S. in 2012 with most of them headed to Florida – that represents an increase of 46% over 2011.

The dramatic increase in tourism is likely connected to the Obama administration’s initiative to shorten the visa approval process for foreign visitors. In a speech about the expansion of the global entry program, President Obama specifically mentioned Brazil as a country that is important to Florida’s economic growth.

Brazilians Find Deals in Florida’s Real Estate Market

Brazilians are also helping the South Florida real estate market rebound. That’s because real estate prices in South Florida are dramatically lower than prices in Brazil. It’s estimated that prime real estate in Florida can cost half as much as similar real estate in Brazil.

Even though economic growth in Brazil has been lower than expected, cash-rich Brazilian investors are targeting the South Florida real estate market. Miami continues to be the focus of Brazilian real estate buyers – with 78% of them paying for properties with cash in 2012. In fact, Miami leads the U.S. in investment by international home buyers.

But investing in real estate in the U.S. isn’t easy. Because of Brazil’s effort to stem the tide of capital flight with a 16% tax, Brazilian investors have turned to the tactic of purchasing rental property or investing in pre-construction projects. The expected high returns from these deals are intended to off-set the tax burden.

It looks like the love affair between Brazilian investors and Florida will have a beautiful future.

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