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Guyana and Haiti to lead Caribbean growth in 2014

Tuesday, January 21, 2014 | 9:24 AM    

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GEORGETOWN, Guyana (CMC) – Guyana and Haiti are expected to lead the economic growth among countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, according to the recently released United Nations’ annual World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP) report 2014.

It said that both Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries are projecting to have economic growth of 4.5 per cent this year, followed by other CARICOM member states Trinidad and Tobago 2.5 per cent, Jamaica 1.2 per cent and Barbados one per cent.

Last year Guyana had economic growth of 4.6 per cent while Haiti’s growth was estimated at 3.5 per cent.

“Overall in the Caribbean region, growth is projected at 3.3 per cent for this year. Last year, growth for the Caribbean region was estimated at 2.4 per cent in 2013, slightly slower than in the last two years.”

The report notes that Latin America and the Caribbean are expected to hasten their growth to 3.6 per cent and 4.1 per cent respectively in the next couple of years, up from 2.6 per cent in 2013.

The WESP report attributes the positive growth in 2014-2015 to sound macroeconomic policies, resilient domestic demand and the gradual recovery in developed economies.

 However, it warns that economic growth remains  subject to growth in other economies, mainly the Euro area, the United States and China, which is now growing  at a slower pace than in previous years.

In 2013, although the region experienced growth, economic expansion was uneven.

South America led with 3.2 per cent growth in gross domestic product (GDP) in 2013, up from 2.5 per cent in 2012, due to a rebound in Argentina and Brazil.

By contrast, in Mexico and Central America, economic activity is estimated to have slowed down to 1.5 per cent in 2013 from 4.0 per cent in 2012, in part because the Mexican economy has faced  structural constraints and GDP growth decelerated significantly to only 1.2 per cent.

WESP is produced at the beginning of each year by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN/DESA), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the five United Nations regional commissions.

A report by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) last December puts Guyana’s economic growth close to WESP’s projections of 4.6 per cent in 2014.

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