RIO DE JANEIRO Ė Brazil produced 237,060 vehicles last month, up 33.8 percent from May 2016, when 177,200 units were manufactured, giving a boost to one of the industries most affected by the recession, the National Association of Automakers (Anfavea) said on Tuesday.
Production of automobiles, sport-utility vehicles, trucks and buses rose 25.1 percent in May, compared to April, when 189,500 units were manufactured.
The sharp rebound in output in May brought the number of vehicles made in Brazil during the first five months of 2017 to 1.037 million units, a figure that was up 23.4 percent from the same period last year, when 840,380 units were manufactured.
The increase in production in May and this year is mainly tied to growth in exports, Anfavea said.
Some 73,426 units, or nearly one-third of the vehicles produced in Brazil last month, were exported, the trade group said.
Automobile exports surged 51 percent in May, compared to the same month in 2016, and totaled 307,558 units during the first five months of this year, up 61.8 percent from the same period in 2016.
Sales of new vehicles also increased last month, but the growth rate was much lower.
In May, 195,562 new vehicles were sold, up 16.76 percent from the 167,489 units sold in the same month last year and 24.64 percent compared to the 156,894 units sold in April, Anfavea said.
A total of 824,491 units were sold in the January-May period, up 1.63 percent from the same period in 2016, when 811,293 new vehicles were sold.
The strong sales figures reflect the recovery in the automotive industry, one of the sectors hammered by the recession that has plagued Brazilís economy for the past two years and finally appears to be ebbing.