Brazil's IT industry moved US$85.1bn in 2010, representing 4% of the country's GDP, according to an unpublished IDC study that local association Brasscom presented to science and technology minister Aloizio Mercadante.
Meanwhile, the ICT industry - including the telecommunications sector - pushed that figure to US$166bn, or 7.9% of Brazil's GDP.
The largest share of the ICT industry's revenues came from the domestic market, which billed US$163bn in 2010, making it the seventh largest in the world. Considering only IT, Brazil's domestic market is the eighth largest, with US$82.7bn in sales.
Considering overall ICT, the US, Japan and China grabbed the first three places respectively on a global scale.
"The industry's goal for 2020 is to increase the relative weight of IT in GDP to 6.5%, with US$200bn in revenues," said Brasscom president Antonio Gil. "The country needs to reduce the labor costs - which in IT take up about 70% of company revenues - train skilled manpower, improve IT infrastructure and promote innovation."
The external IT market, which includes exports and international operations of national companies, reached US$2.39bn in 2010.
Inflation, high labor costs, strong real appreciation and effects of the crisis in developed countries were factors restraining export growth. But Brazil holds great potential, given the technical excellence and human capital in IT, and innovations in key industries, according to Brasscom.
The global IT market, which in 2010 reached US$1.5tn, is expected to bill US$3tn by 2020 - US$900bn of which will come from new applications for banking, security, education, health and transport, areas in which Brazil has experience and is well positioned to take a leap.
In addition, the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) countries have growing economic and political importance and are expected to have a combined GDP of US$25tn in 2020. These factors position Latin American countries, China and India as development engines for the IT market.