Country Insights

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​Que Sera, Sara
PHILIPPINES - In Brief 13 Oct 2021
What we know at this time:The period for filing of certificates of candidacy (COC) closed last Friday and six publicly recognizable figures are running for the presidency. In alphabetical order: Manila Mayor Francisco Domagoso, Senator Ronald dela Rosa, Senator Panfilo Lacson, former Senator Ferd...

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Economics: Electricity sector reform proposal entails major risks for the Mexican economy
MEXICO - Report 12 Oct 2021
In the latest chapter of the current administration’s efforts to roll back the energy sector reform that was fully adopted in 2014, on the final day of September it presented Congress a constitutional reform proposal focused on the electrical power industry. Well before we have gotten a clear loo...

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Politics: Exploring various scenarios as to how the electricity sector reform might play out
MEXICO - Report 12 Oct 2021 1 response
When President López Obrador unveiled at the end of September his package of constitutional reforms designed to turn back the clock and reassert state control over the electric power sector, it might have seemed like a politically reckless move. He had been promising such a reform proposal for we...

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Federal budget surplus soars amid high price of oil and rising inflation
RUSSIA ECONOMICS - In Brief 12 Oct 2021
The federal budget surplus reached R0.367 trln and R1.444 trln in September and 9M21. The government collected 95.5% of the formally approved 2021 budget plan already in 9M21. Oil-and-gas tax collection during this period exceeded the annual plan by 3.3%, while high inflation helped collect 91.9%...

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Duque’s sad swan song
COLOMBIA - Report 12 Oct 2021
As President Iván Duque starts walking into the sunset (a new president will take office in 10 months), a pressing concern apparently plagues his thoughts: no incumbent would like to see voters exhibit change of heart and elect a successor from the opposite side of the political spectrum. But giv...

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A powerful rebound - and prospects for tax reform
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC - Report 12 Oct 2021 1 response
The probability that the Dominican economy will end 2021 with growth of close to 10% is increasing, given accumulated growth of 13% in January-August, compared to the same period in 2020. But not everything is rosy. Although formal employment has returned to nearly pre-pandemic levels, overall un...

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Monetary Policy – The Hour of Truth
BRAZIL ECONOMICS - Report 12 Oct 2021
To satisfy the inflation target at the end of 2022, after having attained the level of 8.25% at the end of 2021, the Central Bank will have to raise the SELIC rate to 9.5% at the start of next year. The cost of a “sufficiently restrictive” monetary policy will be to keep the GDP gap open during a...

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Broad tax reform has a low chance of approval this year and other weekly topics
BRAZIL POLITICS - Report 12 Oct 2021
This is a short week in Brasília due to the October 12 holiday. In the House, the focus will be on the discussion of the bill that deals with the ICMS tax on fuels. The rapporteur of the bill on Auxílio Brasil may submit his report. In the Judicial branch, the STF will analyze the constitutionali...

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Revised inflation outlook
VENEZUELA - Report 12 Oct 2021
In September, because of ample cash dollar supplies by the Central Bank of Venezuela (BCV) throughout the month, the bolivar strengthened to an exchange rate where a dollar fetched fewer than four bolivars. Consumer prices advanced by a mere 10 percent, half the speed we had previously forecast. ...

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Bond purchases to come to an end on robust BoI outlook
ISRAEL - Report 12 Oct 2021
Highlights: The BoI sounds increasingly optimistic * The BoI expects growth to reach 7% this year and 5.5% in 2022. The cumulative growth forecast (12.9%) is 1% higher than previous forecast. * Broad unemployment is expected to reach 5.2% in Q422 from a present 7.9%. * Infl...

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Central Asian countries disagree on cooperating with the Taliban
RUSSIA / FSU POLITICS - In Brief 11 Oct 2021
On October 7 the Uzbek foreign minister visited Afghanistan. Taliban leaders publicly promised him that they they will never interfere in Uzbekistan. The Uzbek government is worried that the Taliban might have helped Islamists in Uzbekistan. Some Afghans are ethnically Uzbek. Uzbekistan has a bri...

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Current account was historically strong in 3Q21
RUSSIA ECONOMICS - In Brief 11 Oct 2021
The Central bank reported that in 3Q21, the current account widened to a historical record of $40.8bn, which was almost half of its entire 9M21 value ($82.2 bn). Previously the strongest ever current account was recorded in 1Q18 ($39.0 bn) and 1Q08 ($38.0 bn). Usually, imports are low early in th...

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Government's tax reform proposal leaked to the press aims to raise revenues by 2.35% GDP in 2022 and 1.79% in 2025
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC - In Brief 11 Oct 2021 2 responses
A document from the Dominican government has been leaked to the press outlining the purposes of the tax reform that is expected to be formally disclosed in the next few days, and that so far has not been confirmed or denied by official bodies. In this document, the Dominican government lays down ...

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The fiscal deficit continues to contract rapidly
ISRAEL - In Brief 11 Oct 2021
The fiscal deficit continued to contract sharply in September, reaching 6.8% GDP (adjusted for the shift in the Jewish holidays) from 8% in August. Tax revenues are up nearly 30% in January-September, due to capital gains taxation on hi-tech exits, real-estate purchase taxation, and strong PC dem...

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​Inflation concerns
PHILIPPINES - In Brief 11 Oct 2021
In a September Pulse Asia survey[1] published last week, “controlling inflation” emerged as the most urgent national concern, significantly ahead of “controlling the spread of covid-19.” Government’s approval score for handling inflation dropped 26 percentage points compared with survey results i...