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LatinNews Daily - 18 June 2021

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In brief: Colombian think-tank predicts stronger recovery than anticipated

* Local think-tank, Fedesarrollo, has increased its prediction of GDP growth for Colombia in 2021 from 4.8% to 7.2%. Fedesarrollo’s director, Luis Fernando Mejía, said that the improved forecast was due to five factors: better-than-expected growth in Q1, when Colombia's economy grew by 1.1% year-on-year; the low basis of comparison (GDP contracted by 6.8% in 2020); the reopening of sectors that had been forced to close due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic; the acceleration of the Covid-19 vaccine rollout; and the improved prospects of the global economy, which Mejía said would increase internal and external demand. However, Mejía warned that unemployment is likely to remain high, and called on the government to design a plan to bring the unemployment rate below 12% by the end of 2021.