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LatinNews Daily - 02 July 2021

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In brief: US$1.78bn IMF loan for Costa Rica passes initial vote

* Costa Rica’s 57-member unicameral legislature has voted in favour of a US$1.78bn loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for the country to address the impact of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. The national assembly is widely expected to green-light the loan in a further vote scheduled for 12 July. Costa Rica’s President Carlos Alvarado described the approval as a “firm and necessary step that allows us to advance in the fiscal consolidation agenda, which provides an indispensable basis for economic recovery”. Last year Costa Rica’s GDP shrank by 4.1% as a result of the pandemic and the country posted a fiscal deficit of 8.1% of GDP, and a public debt of 67.5% of GDP.