By Ben Tavener, Senior Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Exports from Brazil to countries in Africa have increased five percent year-on-year, totaling US$5.53 billion in the first half of 2012. The figures mean demand from Africa now outstrips that from the Middle East, and the total is also greater than Brazilian exports to Germany and France combined, O Globo newspaper reports.

Demand has risen sharply in the past decade: in 2001, Brazil’s exports to Africa amounted to US$1.35 billion. In 2011, that figure was US$12 billion.

Experts believe the increased exports . . .

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