Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski on Saturday addressed the challenges faced by Latin America at the conference "A New Age for Latin America," hosted by his alma mater, prestigious Princeton University.
The Head of State began his speech stressing the region's growing condition, comparing its US$1.9 trillion GDP in 2002 —when he served as Finance Minister— to its current US$5.5 trillion.
Having said that, he noted Latin America still faces major challenges, despite such considerable upward trend.
According to the Head of State, the first major issue is corruption. In this sense, he referred to Brazilian companies' massive graft scandal, which has taken a toll on not only Brazil's economy, but also "all around South America."
The second issue, a subject "journalists and others don't talk very much about, but which they should" is the distribution of public services and income.
The statesman attributed such large inequality to poor public services for the majority of citizens. In Peru, close to a third of the population lacks drinking water. This leads to numerous health risks, he noted.
"Latin America, in general, has a very poor distribution of income. The top 10% have 40% of the income, and the lowest 40% […] have 10% of the income, so there's a big unbalance," Mr. Kuczynski regretted.
Lastly, the 78-year-old highlighted the world trade slowdown as the third-major issue faced by Latin America.
"In the last 3 years, world trade first slowed as a result of the financial crisis and then started to decline. It has declined 2%-3% a year in the last 2-3 years," he noted.
In this respect, he reiterated his stance towards an open economy in order to turn the situation around.