Tuesday, 30 November, 2021
E-paper

Latam will take 'many years' to recover from pandemic damage: IMF

It will take "many years" for Latin American and Caribbean nations to recover from the economic damage inflicted by the Covid-19 pandemic, the IMF warned Thursday.
 
"They should anticipate a long and winding road ahead, with setbacks along the way, as the damage brought by the pandemic is gradually repaired," said Nigel Chalk of the IMF's Western Hemisphere Department.
 
The region still has not contained the health crisis and vaccination rates have lagged, undermining employment and shuttering schools, the International Monetary Fund said in its latest regional outlook.
 
"These trends could, potentially, take many years to reverse," he said.
 
And Chalk warned that because of the damage "output for most of the region is not returning to the path we had envisaged prior to the pandemic."
 
The fund forecasts growth in the region will slow to three percent in 2022 from more than double that rate this year, but there are a wide range of estimates among the countries.
 
 Average GDP is not expected to return to its pre-pandemic levels until 2022 or 2023, and growth will be "subdued" over the coming years due to the "long-lasting scars," the report said.
 
The more rapid global recovery with high consumer demand and rising commodity prices should help many countries in the region.
 
However, tourism has been slower to recover, and rising inflation and the potential for higher interest rates could hinder growth, the IMF said.