out that in the last five years there has been a distinct trend toward
an increase reaching 947 tons in 1939. In that year the chief market
for the product was Belgium which imported 583 metric tons of the ore
while the United States was the other market purchasing 364 metric
tons. In 2937 and 1938, England and Germany were other markets for the
mineral but did not appear in the Brazilian market in 1939. In 1940,
exports amounted to 296 tons, the principal outlets being Great Britain
(150 tons) and the United States (143 tons). The other market was
Argentina which purchased 3 metric tons.
unit price of export lead ore in 1938 was 516 milreis per metric ton
and that of 1939 — 416 milreis. The 1940 price rose to 454 milreis
while that at the mine was 800 milreis (concentrated).
country imports about 10,000 metric tons of crude lead annually valued
at about 19,000 contos-de-reis, the industrial center of Sao Paulo
alone consuming about 12,000 contos-de-reis of leads ingots.
of the crude metal in the 1920-9 decade averaged 4,729 metric tons
while in the succeeding five year period this rose to 5,600 metric
tons. During the 1935-9 period, there was a sharp increase in the
average to 9,270 metric tons which continued in 1940 in which the total
was 9,358 metric tons. The United States and Canada were the principal
sources of the crude lead in the latter year, imports from the former
being 4,778 metric tons and that from the latter 3,351 metric tons.
Chile was a secondary source supplying 697 metric tons. Lead sheet
imports amounted to 93 metric tons in 1940, seventy tons while that for
tubes in 1940, amounted to 25 metric tons, 18 tons of the latter being
from Great Britain, 6 metric tons from the United States and a small
amount from Sweden.
As was mentioned, silver in Brazil, as in Australia, is found associated principally with lead.
world production of silver showed a substantial increase with the
discovery of America, which today, contributes to about 80% of the
world total. However, even in the Colonial days when the idea prevailed
that great riches in silver existed in the sertoes (prairies)
of Brazil and incited the interest of the Portuguese, Brazil was still
among the smallest of producers in the American continent. It would
thus lead to the conclusion that silver, in contrast to gold, has never
exercised an appreciable influence on the national economy. And yet,
there are few countries with conditions so favorable as those of Brazil
for the production of large quantities. It is encountered in the
various lead deposits of the states of Sao Paulo and Parana where
silver is obtained as a by-product of the working of that metal. It is
interesting to note that the exploitation of the plumbiferous zone of
these states, though still on a small scale and accomplished with
difficulties in transportation, still has been able to operate due to
the fact that the ores of the region contain high percentages of
silver. The erection of