Balancing the books, shifting the landscape: the NFPS deficit and Martinelli's disqualification

PANAMA - Report 15 Feb 2024 by Marco Fernandez

Despite having to resort to accounting artifices, the government upheld the fiscal ceiling, as highlighted by credit rating agencies and analysts. In 2022, the Non-Financial Public Sector deficit was 3.98% (when the legal limit was 4.0%), and in 2023, it fell below the required 3.0%. In the last full year of the Cortizo-Alexander administration, it was expected that the government would do everything possible to leave a legacy of fiscal compliance.

In political news, while Ricardo Martinelli's asylum in the Embassy of Nicaragua (not accepted as legitimate by the Panamanian government) disqualifies him from running in the May elections, his shadow looms large.

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