Nicaragua As Seen by the IMF in March 2015

"Nicaragua has advanced greatly in recent years consolidating its economic stability, improving macroeconomic balances and reducing vulnerabilities."

Monday, March 9, 2015

From a statement issued by the International Monetary Fund (IMF):

Mr. Min Zhu, Deputy Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), issued the following statement at the conclusion of his visit to Nicaragua today:

“It is a great pleasure for me to visit Nicaragua. I was privileged to meet President Daniel
Ortega, Presidential Advisor Bayardo Arce, Central Bank President Ovidio Reyes,
Finance Minister Ivan Acosta, members of the National Assembly, and representatives of the private sector and of think tanks involved in economic matters.

“Our discussions focused on Nicaragua’s outlook and opportunities as well as the regional economic context. We also discussed the importance of raising productivity in Nicaragua.
“Nicaragua has made much progress over the last years in consolidating macroeconomic
stability, improving balance sheets and reducing vulnerabilities. Its performance during the financial crisis of 2008-09 was sound, as the economy was stimulated at the peak of the crisis before returning to sustainable public finances as export markets recovered. Growth in Nicaragua has outperformed other countries in the region and social indicators have improved, although reducing poverty remains one of Nicaragua’s main challenges.

“Sustaining growth over the medium term requires boosting productivity and raising private investment. To this end, further reforms are needed in the electricity sector, including through a subsidies policy that better targets the poor and that supports improvements in education and strengthens agricultural yields. I was encouraged to see that work has advanced on many fronts, and that the authorities are eager to identify policies that can strengthen Nicaragua’s economic performance.

“We are looking forward to continuing our discussions with the Nicaraguan and other authorities in the region on how to improve the prospects for Latin America in the coming months as we prepare for the Annual Meetings of the IMF and the World Bank in Lima, Peru.”

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This note summarizes preliminary findings and recommendations of the IMF staff mission that visited Costa Rica during October 28–November 11 to conduct the 2014 Article IV consultation.

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