Brazil is the place to be as far as real estate investment goes, says billionaire property investor Sam Zell.
And he’s got his money where his mouth is. His investment firm Equity International has more than half its capital in Brazil.
“It’s the U.S. in the 1950s. It has a growing population, it’s energy self-sufficient, it’s food self-sufficient," Zell told CNBC.
“It’s growing and, at least for now, they’ve solved the problem of inflation. They’ve got a disciplined government that’s socially aggressive and fiscally conservative.”
Zell is impressed that debt totals only about 8 percent of gross domestic product in Brazil, compared to 60 percent in the United States.
And October’s presidential election shouldn’t upset the apple cart, as both major candidates have pledged to follow the policies of current president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.
“If that continues to be the case, I would think that Brazil is likely to be the number one or number two country in the world for growth over the next five to 10 years,” Zell said.
Equity International’s investments are focused on the growth of Brazil’s middle class, with millions of people being lifted from poverty there.
A recent International Monetary Fund report lauded Brazil for its quick recovery from the financial crisis.
"This remarkable performance has been underpinned by the authorities' robust policy framework, based on fiscal responsibility, exchange rate flexibility, and a credible inflation target," the report said.
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