The Stars of the Caribbean

New projections from Cepal show sustained growth in Panama, the Dominican Republic and St. Kitts and Nevis. Brazil is in deep recession and Venezuela is in free fall.

The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (Cepal) has released its latest economic growth forecasts for the region’s countries. The United Nations affiliate expects the region’s economy to shrink by an average of 0.6 percent this year.

“This new estimate tells us that the contraction that the regional Gross Domestic Product (GDP) suffered in 2015 (0.5 percent) will extend into the present year,” the Cepal report said.

The growth data for this year show that the region’s stars are in the Caribbean. The countries with the highest growth rates will be Panama, the Dominican Republic and St. Kitts and Nevis.

On the other side, Cepal says, “the economies of South America that are concentrated in the production of primary goods, especially oil and minerals, and that have strong trade ties with China, are headed for a contraction of 1.9 percent.”

CEPAL is projecting a growth rate of 3.9 percent for the Central American economies, down slightly from the 4.3 percent they posted in 2015, and for the English- and Dutch-speaking Caribbean countries they foresee growth of around 0.9 percent in 2016.

Read the full story at Latin Trade.

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