KUALA LUMPUR – The International Monetary Fund projected on Monday a gradual upturn for the Latin American economy in 2017 and 2018, based largely on Argentina’s and Brazil’s recoveries from their recessions.
The IMF presented the update to the April edition of its World Economic Outlook in Kuala Lumpur.
The organization estimates that Latin America and the Caribbean will grow 1 percent in 2017 and 1.9 percent in 2018, which – in both cases – is 0.1 percent lower than its April forecast.
The IMF has raised Brazil’s economic growth to 0.3 percent for this year, but cut it to 1.3 percent for 2018.
“Brazil’s growth forecast for 2017 is now higher in light of the strong first quarter, but ongoing weakness in domestic demand and an increase in political and policy uncertainty will be reflected in a more subdued pace of recovery, and hence in lower projected growth in 2018,” the IMF report said.
Mexico’s growth forecast for 2017 increased from 1.7 percent to 1.9 percent, driven by a strong first quarter, while the forecast for 2018 remains unchanged at 2 percent.
The update points out that the Mexican peso increased slightly thanks to the “tighter monetary policy and reduced concerns about US trade frictions.”
“Revisions for the rest of the region are mostly to the downside, including a further deterioration of conditions in Venezuela,” the update added.