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LatinNews Regional Monitor: Brazil & Southern Cone - 10 April 2019

In brief: Brazil

* The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has released its April 2019 World Economic Update, in which it projects that Brazil’s GDP will grow 2.1% in 2019. This is a downwards revision from January’s projections of 2.5%. The IMF notes that Brazil’s main priority must be “to contain rising public debt while ensuring that needed social spending remains intact”. The government spending cap introduced under former president Michel Temer (2016-2019) and maintained by current President Jair Bolsonaro is singled out as a positive step towards fiscal consolidation, but the IMF notes that further adjustments are needed, including a pension reform and cuts to public spending on wages. The IMF also recommends that Brazil improve infrastructure and the efficiency of financial intermediation to help boost productivity and economic growth in the medium-term.