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Total retail sales in Latin America will reach $1.8 trillion in 2015, according to eMarketer’s latest worldwide retail sales forecast. Latin America will remain the fourth-largest region in terms of total retail sales, just ahead of Central and Eastern Europe. Retail sales in Latin America will represent 8.1% of the worldwide total in 2015.
The struggling economy of Brazil, the region’s largest retail market, has slightly hurt overall growth projections, and eMarketer anticipates retail growth will slip from 5.5% in 2014 to 5.0% in 2016. Retail sales growth rates in Brazil will continue to decline until a slight rebound in 2018. Meanwhile, gains in retail sales are seen in Mexico as the country benefits from GDP growth.
Retail ecommerce sales will grow 22.9% in Latin America in 2015, a slowdown from a 26.1% growth rate in 2014. In general, there is considerable room for growth for retail ecommerce sales in Latin America, as the digital retail market represents a small fraction of total retail sales. Improvements made to ecommerce shipping and payment systems, along with expanding digital audiences, will help drive growth over the forecast period.
“Mobile access is playing an increasingly important role in the development of online shopping in Latin America, similar to other regions," said eMarketer director of forecasting Monica Peart. "Major regional players such as MercadoLibre are investing heavily to enhance their mobile platforms to better serve these new shoppers.”
Worldwide retail sales across all channels will reach $22.512 trillion in 2015, up 5.6% from 2014. eMarketer forecasts sales to reach nearly $28 trillion in 2019, but annual growth rates will gradually slow from 2015 to 2019. Global retail ecommerce sales—including online and mobile commerce—will reach $1.671 trillion in 2015, accounting for 7.4% of total retail spending. By 2019, digital sales will more than double, reaching $3.578 trillion, for a 12.8% share of total retail spending.
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