High NFPS deficit in the first quarter of 2019: the challenges to Cortizo´s administration

PANAMA - In Brief 13 May 2019 by Marco Fernandez

The net deficit of Q1 was $966 million: 1.4% of projected (by MEF) nominal GDP for the complete year, or around 5% of “adjusted” GDP for the quarter. This figure does not include payments in arrears to contractors (a figure that may be at least 600 million, according to private sources). The primary deficit was more than five times higher than the first quarter of last year. The mid-year deficit, Varela’s inheritance to Nito Cortizo, is likely to be higher percentage-wise due to the slow economic activity we projected for the first half. The composition of the deficit is worrisome: tax reve...

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