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LatinNews Daily - 14 June 2021

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In brief: Chile’s central bank says economy is adapting to lockdowns

* The president of Chile’s central bank (BCCh), Mario Marcel, has said that the country’s economy has learned to adapt to lockdown measures as the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic has progressed. After new lockdown measures were introduced across the vast majority of the country in March and April, economic activity fell by only 3%, compared with the same period last year when less intrusive measures were introduced and economic activity contracted by a much larger 15%. Marcel puts this effect down to businesses and workers finding ways to continue adapting to the circumstances, and as a result being less impacted by potential new curbs to freedoms. Marcel’s comments came on the day that the Santiago Metropolitan Region (RM) was put back under quarantine due to rising Covid-19 cases, and shortly after the BCCh revised up its forecast for 2021 GDP growth to 8.5%-9.5%. Despite the economy’s stronger than expected performance and expectations that it will continue to weather lockdowns, Marcel emphasised that certain sectors without the capacity to adapt have nonetheless been severely impacted.