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LatinNews Daily - 20 September 2021

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In brief: Panama’s GDP growth surges

* Panama’s national statistics institute (Inec) has released new figures which show that the country’s GDP grew 10% year-on-year in the first half of 2021. This stems from the low basis of comparison on account of the coronavirus (Covid-19) lockdown restrictions that were introduced last year, causing Panama’s GDP to contract 17.9% in 2020 – the highest contraction in Central America. The same Inec figures show Panama’s GDP increased 40.4% in the second quarter of 2021 year-on-year. Sectors which registered particularly high growth included: exploitation of mining & quarries (728.3% year-on-year); construction (489.5%); other community, social & personal services (189.7%); and hotels & restaurants (92.0%), while fishing declined 4.0% and financial intermediation contracted by 5.3%.