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Economy & Business - December 2020

LEADER
When Chileans voted at the end of October in favour of convening a constituent assembly to draft a new constitution, the stock market was unimpressed, registering a 2.7% share price fall on the Monday after the vote...
ANDEAN COUNTRIES
Almost a year after Bolivia’s former president, Evo Morales (2006-2019), was forced to resign, the left-wing Movimiento al Socialismo (MAS) returned to power in November, following Luis Arce’s decisive electoral victory the previous month...
Between legal challenges, public protests, and threats of violence against environmental activists, Colombia’s impassioned national debate over whether to push ahead with plans to extract unconventional oil and gas reserves through hydraulic fracturing – or ‘fracking’ – shows no sign of easing...
Differing stances on dollarisation have made this issue into a significant point of contention ahead of Ecuador’s February 2021 general election...
PERU | Bonds issue...
BRAZIL & SOUTHERN CONE
Óscar Llamosas became Paraguay’s new finance minister on 29 October, replacing Benigno López, who stepped down to take up a senior role at the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)...
When Paulo Guedes was appointed Brazil’s ‘super minister’ of the economy in January 2019, friends and foes alike thought he would launch sweeping pro-market economic reforms...
The Brazilian government is trying to restart the tourism industry, which is still crippled by the effects of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic...
ARGENTINA | Government launches gas production plan...
CENTRAL AMERICA & CARIBBEAN
The November Caribbean Quarterly Bulletin from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) provides a sobering update on how the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic has affected the main Caribbean economies and makes the case for an investment-led strategy for recovery...
At the end of October Panama’s 71-member unicameral national legislature approved a proposal by the Partido Revolucionario Democrático (PRD) government led by President Laurentino Cortizo that raises the legally established limits for the fiscal deficit included in the 2008 social and fiscal responsibility law (LRSF)...
On 30 September, the Salvadoran government led by President Nayib Bukele presented its proposed 2021 national budget, which is unlikely to be approved by the legislature given concerns about the huge rise in spending...
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC | Port expansion...
MEXICO
The head of the United Nation Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (Eclac), Mexico’s Alicia Bárcena, reported on 1 December that Mexico was the Latin American country which experienced the least severe contraction of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) so far this year, having only shrunk by 6% during the first nine months of 2020 compared to the regional average of 35%...
Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel Lopez Obrador on 12 November sent a bill to congress that virtually bans all forms of outsourcing, which was regulated in the 2012 labour reform with the aim of introducing much needed flexibility into the domestic labour market...
Two years after the financial technologies law (also known as the ‘Fintech law’) came into force in September 2018, Mexico has become the second main country in Latin American in terms of the size of the fintech sector...
Third quarter growth: On 26 November Mexico’s national statistics institute (Inegi) published figures for third quarter growth which confirmed preliminary figures indicating that GDP grew 12.1% in the quarter compared with the previous quarter...

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