Peru , Paraguay , Panama , India , Argentina , Chile , Bolivia , Guyana , Mexico , Dominican Republic , Honduras , Colombia , Brazil , Venezuela , Guatemala and Israel

At a glance: LatAm's fastest-growing economies

Bnamericas Published: Tuesday, April 09, 2019
At a glance: LatAm's fastest-growing economies

The IMF forecasts growth in Latin America will recover over the next two years, spurred on by an expected strengthening of regional powerhouses Brazil and Argentina.

Brazil is exiting from the 2015-2016 recession while Argentina is projected to return to growth in the second half of the year as real disposable income and farm output recovers. Argentina's economy has been hit by fallout from a drought, peso turbulence and belt-tightening measures.

The multilateral expects a regional expansion of 1.4% this year and 2.4% for 2020, down from previous forecasts, with Mexico and Venezuela dragging on the forecasts.

IMF, in its April World Economic Outlook report, cited perceptions about policy direction in Mexico - where President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has taken steps such as scrapping a multibillion-dollar airport project - and the economic crisis in Venezuela.

In January, the IMF forecast the regional economy would expand 2.0% this year and 2.5% in 2020, up from 1.0% in 2018.

It forecasts the economy of Argentina will contract 1.2% this year but grow 2.2% next. For Brazil it expects growth of 2.1% and 2.5%, respectively.

In terms of the global economy, the IMF revised down its growth forecast for this year to 3.3% from January's forecast of 3.5%. For 2020, it held steady at 3.6%. Growth in 2018 was also 3.6%, it said.

Growth in Mexico is forecast to register at 1.6% this year and 1.9% next, down from 2.0% in 2018, while Venezuela's economy is expected to shrink 25.0% this year and 10.0% in 2020.

Global economic activity slowed last year amid trade tensions, natural disasters and tightened financial conditions.

The IMF said: "Conditions have eased in 2019 as the US Federal Reserve signaled a more accommodative monetary policy stance and markets became more optimistic about a US-China trade deal, but they remain slightly more restrictive than in the fall."

The IMF expects global growth to pick up in H2. "The projected pickup in the second half of 2019 is predicated on an ongoing buildup of policy stimulus in China, recent improvements in global financial market sentiment, the waning of some temporary drags on growth in the euro area, and a gradual stabilization of conditions in stressed emerging market economies, including Argentina and Turkey," it said. "Improved momentum for emerging market and developing economies is projected to continue into 2020, primarily reflecting developments in economies currently experiencing macroeconomic distress - a forecast subject to notable uncertainty."

Risks include a further escalation of trade tensions and a tightening of financial conditions.

"Over the medium term, climate change and political discord in the context of rising inequality are key risks that could lower global potential output, with particularly severe implications for some vulnerable countries," it said.


No. 1

The island nation of Dominica is expected to see GDP growth of 8.0% in 2019.


Panama: 6.0%

No. 3

Dominican Republic: 5.1%

No. 4

Grenada: 4.2%

No. 5

Jointly held by Bolivia and Antigua and Barbuda: 4.0%

No. 6

Peru: 3.9%

No. 7

Guyana, which has struck oil and expected to see a surge in oil dollars: 3.8%

No. 8

Jointly held by Colombia, Guatemala, Paraguay and St. Kitts and Nevis: 3.5%

No. 9

Jointly held by Honduras and Chile: 3.4%

No. 10

St. Lucia: 3.3%

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