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LatinNews Daily - 05 February 2021

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In brief: Chile must reduce inequality, says OECD

* The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has released its latest ‘Economic Survey of Chile’ report, in which it recommends that the South American country “focus on reducing inequality to strengthen social and economic recovery” from the crisis caused by both the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic and the social unrest of 2019. The survey expects Chile’s GDP to expand 4.2% this year after contracting 6% in 2020. The OECD praises Chile’s strong institutions and sound public finances, which allowed for stimulus measures to support the economy, but warns of the persistent challenge that high inequality represents. “The Covid-19 crisis offers an opportunity to create consensus on reforms to ensure strong public services, a dynamic business sector and a fairer society where all Chileans can share the fruits of economic growth”, the OECD Director of Economic Country Studies, Alvaro Pereira, said during the presentation of the report. The OECD recommends continuing support to small firms and the recently unemployed, broadening the tax base and eliminating unnecessary tax exemptions, and increasing public spending on primary and secondary education as necessary measures to help address inequality in Chile.