The Copa América, the football  tournament that brings together all South American national teams, starts on 1st July in Argentina. Ten South American nations will be represented as well as Mexico and Costa Rica (Japan had to pull out). We have chosen just one interesting international trade fact per country as a way of introduction…

Argentina: Second export destination is China (9.1%), after Brazil (18.9%)

Bolivia: Main export to the EU is zinc (43% of all exports to the EU)

Brazil: Principal export destination is the United States (13.9%)

Chile: Principal export is copper – it is also the world’s leading producer

Colombia: Coffee is Colombia’s third main export

Costa Rica (guest): In 2006 Intel generated for 20% of the country’s exports

Ecuador: In 2009, the government announced its intention to terminate 13 bilateral trade agreements

Mexico (guest): 5th biggest producer of lead in the world

Paraguay: Main country for imports is China

Peru: Organic exports are up 48.3% on last year

Uruguay : Main exports are beef, soybeans, cellulose, rice, wheat, wood, dairy products and wool

Venezuela: Oil accounts for 95% of export earnings

Some interesting facts about the Copa América itself:

– Only the final is being played in Buenos Aires (in the Estadio Monumental de Nuñez), the rest of the matches are spread throughout the country

– The Estadio Monumental de Nuñez hosted the 1978 World Cup Final – remember Mario Kempes and ticker tape?

– The Estadio Monumental de Nuñez is home to Club Atlético River Plate – why the English name? Englishmen took football  (and trains, and utilities) to the River Plate (Argentina and Uruguay) – that is why you will find many clubs with English names in both countries: Montevideo Wanderers, Boca Juniors, Racing Club, Newell’s Old Boys…

– Talking about football club names and English influence, Peñarol, this year’s Copa Libertadores runners up, were originally called the CURCC: Central Uruguayan Railway Cricket Club – you don’t get much more English than that!

In the UK, you can watch the Copa América on ESPN (not Sky Sports like previous tournaments).

For more information, see

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Enjoy the tournament!

Sources: The Economist, CIA World Factbook, IBCE (Bolivian International Trade Institute),, (further reference info available upon request)