Country Insights

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Guatemala: Back to the streets
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 23 Nov 2020 1 response
Major civil protests asking for the resignation of President Alejandro Giammattei and opposing the large deficit in next year´s budget took place in the streets of Guatemala City and some other major domestic locations this weekend. As usually happens in events of this type, small groups took a m...

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Bearing up (with updates to Tables 1 and 2)
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 28 Oct 2020
Costa Rica is caught in political confrontations over the urgent task of restoring fiscal sustainability in order to avoid a financial crisis. The government’s decision to discard the announced proposal for a program with IMF has been October’s most noteworthy event. The failure came from the bia...

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COVID’S variable impacts
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 29 Sep 2020 1 response
The COVID-19-driven global crisis is leading to the worst economic contraction since the Great Depression. The depth of the consequences, however, isn’t the same everywhere. It depends both upon a country’s economic health at the starting point, and the stringency of public health measures to cop...

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Costa Rica: An ambitious fiscal proposal
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 18 Sep 2020
The government announced an ambitious proposal to achieve an extended facility agreement with the IMF in order to bring back the debt to a sustainable path. The proposal, which includes the effects of the fiscal reform approved in December 2018, consists of a mix of temporary and permanent action...

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GUATEMALA: Heading toward recession
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 31 Aug 2020
Five months after the first COVID-19 case in Guatemala, the situation has escalated into a full-blown health, economic and social problem. As of August 27th, the number of recognized coronavirus cases had reached 71,000, and the number of deaths had already surpassed 2,600. As in the rest of th...

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Costa Rica: CB Macroeconomic Program
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 04 Aug 2020
The Central Bank of Costa Rica released the mid-term revision of the macroeconomic program for 2020-2021 on July 30th. After updating the pandemic evolution, here and abroad, the Bank concludes that the provisional April assumptions on the public health and economic activity consequences don’t ho...

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Financial thunderclouds in the south
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 30 Jul 2020
Costa Rica will be soon be walking a tightrope, as various forces act in concert. First, the still-developing pandemic has affected nearly 16,000 people, costing more than 100 lives, and causing negative growth, high unemployment and a rise in poverty. Second, the fiscal situation is critical. Th...

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The pandemic takes its toll
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 29 Jun 2020
Costa Rica’s second wave of the pandemic is on its way, as happened in other countries after restrictive measures were relaxed. The gradual reopening plan begun at the end of May was interrupted June 19th, after a hike of non-clustered cases, the most worrying indicator of eventual massive contag...

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COSTA RICA: Finance Minister asked to resign
CENTRAL AMERICA - In Brief 29 May 2020
Finance Minister Rodrigo Chaves resigned yesterday after a conversation with President Alvarado. Alvarado was not happy with the way Chaves had handled his discrepancy with a law taking the municipal governments out from compliance with the fiscal rule. Chaves sent an open letter to the President...

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Central America, Dominican Republic, Panama Region webinar featuring Francisco de Paula Gutierrez, Felix Delgado, Pavel Isa and Marco Fernandez: Challenges amid the pandemic
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 29 May 2020
Central America, Dominican Republic, Panama Region webinar featuring Francisco de Paula Gutierrez, Felix Delgado, Pavel Isa and Marco Fernandez: Challenges amid the pandemic​ GlobalSource Partners’ Country Analysts discuss the Covid-19 health situation, the macro and fiscal implications of the...

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Struggling to fight COVID-19
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 28 May 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic arrived in Central America in March, and is posing both health and economic challenges. The infection has spread, and is having various economic and social impacts, on production, employment, the balance of payments, fiscal accounts and the financial system. In Costa Rica...

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Costa Rica: The Finance Minister released new fiscal deficit estimates
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 04 May 2020
The April 30 press conference of Minister of Finance Rodrigo Chaves only confirmed what we anticipated in our March and April reports about the seriousness of the fiscal consequences from COVID-19, mounted on long-term fiscal fragility and a lack of willingness to adopt the required measures on t...

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Bracing for shrinkage of up to 4%
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 28 Apr 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic is still developing in El Salvador, with negative economic effects arriving on the heels of the government’s tough measures to cope with it. The virus arrived relatively late, with the first positive case recorded on March 18th. That was almost two weeks after the first case...

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Coping with the coronavirus threat
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 27 Mar 2020
In Guatemala, President Alejandro Giammattei, who took office on January 14th, is facing what will likely be the toughest challenge of his term. The coronavirus pandemic has already reached Guatemala, and the short-term outlook for the country is changing dramatically. Until February, we expect...

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Fiscal reform’s painful birth depresses growth
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 26 Feb 2020
Costa Rica’s 2019 economic evolution was marked by the fiscal problem, and the political environment surrounding it. In the reform and its entry into law in early December 2018, uncertainty about its implementation, and the willingness of the Executive to comply with it extended negative expectat...