Economic Recovery May Be Delayed

Although Panamanian businessmen recognize that in the first months of the Cortizo administration there have been advances that could improve the performance of the local economy, it is predicted that the reactivation could take longer than expected.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

The gradual elimination of price control, the creation of the PPP regulatory framework and greater flexibility in preferential interests in the housing market are the most important advances that the productive sector has recognized to the Cortizo government.

These changes seek to achieve economic reactivation, which should be reflected in the level of growth of the economy, which is estimated to be between 3% and 3.5% at the end of 2019, according to the latest forecasts of Moody's agency.

Andy Espinosa, economic advisor of the Industrial Union of Panama (SIP), told Elcapitalfinanciero.com that "... the growth of GDP at the end of 2019 will not exceed 3%, very different from the 4 or 5% predicted by international financial institutions, which is not enough to reactivate the economy and meet the country's needs mainly in terms of jobs. The positive is that measures are being taken to reactivate the economy, 'we believe that if there is a favorable environment for investment and business, that the economy will be reactivated little by little in the coming years, but not at the speed we would like."

Samuel Moreno, president of the National College of Economists, explained that "... the projects that really generate economic movement and employment, in terms of multipliers, are the mega-projects, so we hope that works on the third line of the subway and the fourth bridge over the Canal will begin soon, so that by the end of 2020 we can improve our growth by 4 or 5%. We also hope that the activity of the banana industry and the export of copper reaches its maximum capacity, as well as the culmination of works such as the Pacific cruise port, the Amador convention center and the port on Margarita Island, Colon, can generate new jobs."

According to official figures, during the second quarter of the year Panama's constant GDP totaled $10.498 million, 3% more than that reported in the same period of 2018, explained by the activity of transport and trade.

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More on this topic

The Cortizo Era Begins

July 2019

Laurentino Cortizo, who came to power after promising a campaign to reactivate the economy, make constitutional reforms and make structural changes in several entities, assumes the presidency of Panama on July 1.

Laurentino Nito Cortizo Cohen, a member of the Democratic Revolutionary Party, won the presidential elections by a narrow margin at the beginning of May, concentrating nearly 33% of the votes.

Panama: GDP Up 5.8% in the First Half of 2017

September 2017

Transportation, storage and communications, construction and mining activities accounted for most of the 5.8% growth in GDP during the first half of the year.

From a statement issued by the Ministry of Economy and Finance:  
 
Economy and Finance Minister Dulcidio De La Guardia was optimistic about the economy's results during the first half of 2017, which point to a growth of 5.8% in Gross Domestic Product (GDP). 

Nicaragua: GDP Up 4.7% in 2016

March 2017

The best performing sector was the financial services sector, with growth of 9.8%, followed by trade, which recorded an increase of 5.8%.

From a report by the Central Bank:

The Central Bank of Nicaragua (BCN) published, on Thursday March 16, 2017, results of the estimate of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for 2016. The results indicate that in 2016, GDP achieved a growth rate of 4.7 percent. 

Guatemala 2014: Economy Up 4%

April 2015

Mining and quarrying reported a growth of 47.5%, financial intermediation and insurance 7.8%, supplies of electricity and water 5.2% and construction 4.6%.

According to a report by the Bank of Guatemala (Banguat), economic performance in the last three months of 2014 was 4.4%, while the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 4.2% at the end of that year, being the same level reported in 2011.

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