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IMF projects 2% growth for Latin America and Caribbean in 2024

International Monetary Fund (IMF)

Posted: Sunday, April 21, 2024. 11:31 am CST.

By Horace Palacio: According to Caribbean Loop News, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has projected a two percent economic growth for the Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) region this year. The report highlights the region’s resilience and underscores the challenges it faces.

The IMF reports that the region has shown “quite a bit of resilience,” with a stronger-than-expected rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic. However, Rodrigo Valdes, Director of the IMF’s Western Hemisphere Department, notes that “activity in the region has been generally moderating in recent quarters.”

Valdes highlights that labor markets have remained strong, with historically low unemployment. However, he warns of slowing growth in the region due to a weakening trade environment and the effects of inflation-fighting monetary policy.

“We expect growth in Latin America and in the Caribbean to moderate further this year, slowing from 2.3 per cent that the region grew in 2023 to two per cent this year,” Valdes stated.

The IMF projects the region’s medium-term growth to average around two percent in the upcoming years, significantly lower than similar economies in other world regions.

The IMF also offered insights into the economic situations of specific Caribbean nations:

  • Haiti: The IMF projects a three percent negative growth rate for Haiti this year due to ongoing instability. They are engaged with Haiti but emphasize security restoration as a prerequisite for economic stability.
  • St. Kitts and Nevis: The country is expected to maintain a solid three percent growth rate in the medium term. The IMF recommends transitioning to renewable energy, infrastructure investment, and tax reform to reduce reliance on citizenship by investment programs.
  • The Caribbean in General: Valdes noted that the Caribbean has recovered well from recent shocks and is normalizing its economic activity. To sustain and boost growth, the IMF urges an emphasis on long-term reforms that address the underlying drivers of growth.

 

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