Preliminary Overview of the Economies of Latin America and the Caribbean 2015

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This publication highlights a regional slowdown in GDP growth. It argues that the currency depreciation seen in several countries in the region could, if sustained, increase incentives for investment in tradeable sectors other than the region’s traditional exports (commodities), while redirecting expenditure to ease pressure on the current account. Growth-supporting industrial, trade, environmental, social and labour policies that take into account the needs of small and medium-sized enterprises, could help lessen the region’s structural heterogeneity. Growth combined with greater equality would thus gain economic and social sustainability, with greater reliance from investment and exports than before. It is argued that this combination would be aided by social covenants for investment.



Risks and outlook for 2016

A number of scenarios and possible risks will arise in the global economy in 2016 and will unquestionably affect the course of economic activity in the Latin American and Caribbean region. As noted earlier, projections for the next few years are for low global growth, sustained by slow but steady recovery in the developed economies. Serious risks remain, however, which could jeopardize that trajectory. Aside from the eurozone’s ongoing difficulties, uncertainty has been mounting over the future performance of China and the emerging economies in general. In the case of China, the most likely scenarios point to continued economic slowdown, with a growth rate of around 6.4% in 2016. Trends in the emerging economies are clouding the aggregate external demand outlook for the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean.


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