Latin America GDP growth weaker than expected in 2013: IMF

08 October 2013 21:02  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--GDP growth in most of Latin America and the Caribbean was weaker than had been expected earlier because of infrastructure bottlenecks, lower commodity prices and policy tightening, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Tuesday in its world economic outlook.

Overall growth for Latin America and the Caribbean is expected at 2.7%, down from 2.9% in 2012, the IMF said.

In Mexico, GDP growth is projected at 1.2% for 2013, down from 3.6% in 2012, because of lower government spending, a decline in construction and weak demand from the US, the IMF said.

In Brazil, GDP growth is projected at 2.5% for 2013, compared with 0.9% in 2012. Growth was as fast as 7.5% in 2010.

While the recent depreciation of the Brazilian real will increase competitiveness in global markets, higher inflation could hurt internal consumption, according to the IMF.

Growth in Argentina has recovered to 3.5% from 1.9% last year because of a strong harvest, but foreign exchange and other administrative controls continue to constrain activity.

In Chile, Colombia, Peru and Uruguay growth is expected to moderate to more sustainable levels. Growth rates for 2013 are projected at 5.4% for Peru, 4.4% for Chile, 3.7% for Colombia and 3.5% for Uruguay, while Venezuela is expected to grow by 1.0%, the IMF said.

By: Ron Coifman
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