The Peruvian economy may have grown 13.5% in 2021, the largest growth among South American nations, the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC)
forecast on Wednesday.
In addition, Peru experienced the second-largest economic growth among Latin American and Caribbean countries, after Guyana, which expanded by 18.5%.
The Latin America and Caribbean region will see its pace of growth decelerate in 2022 to 2.1%, after reaching 6.2% on average last year, according to new projections released today by ECLAC.
This slowdown takes place in a context of significant asymmetries between developed, emerging, and developing countries with regard to the capacity to implement fiscal, social, monetary, and health and vaccination policies for a sustainable recovery from the crisis unleashed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
This is according to ECLAC's annual report entitled Preliminary Overview of the Economies of Latin America and the Caribbean 2021, which was unveiled today during a virtual press conference held from Mexico City by the United Nations organization's Executive Secretary, Alicia Barcena.
The document indicates that the region is facing a very complex 2022: uncertainty regarding the pandemic's ongoing evolution, a sharp deceleration in growth, continued low investment and productivity and slow recovery in employment, the persistence of the social effects prompted by the crisis, reduced fiscal space, increased inflationary pressures and financial imbalances.
"The expected slowdown in the region in 2022, combined with the problems of low investment and productivity, poverty and inequality, calls for growth and employment creation to be central elements of public policymaking while at the same time addressing inflationary pressures," Alicia Barcena stated.
According to ECLAC, the 2.1% average growth foreseen for this year reflects great heterogeneity among countries and sub-regions: the Caribbean will grow 6.1% (excluding Guyana) and Central America will grow 4.5%, while South America will expand by 1.4%.
Meanwhile, in 2021, the region experienced higher-than-expected growth, averaging 6.2% due to the low baseline established in 2020, to greater mobility and to a favorable external context.
According to the Preliminary Overview 2021, estimates point to advanced economies growing by 4.2% in 2022, being the only ones to resume the growth trajectory foreseen before the pandemic over the course of this year.
Emerging economies, meanwhile, are seen growing 5.1% in 2022, but they will only resume the growth trajectory forecast before the pandemic in 2025. In 2021, 11 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean managed to regain the GDP levels seen prior to the crisis. In 2022, another three countries will join them, accounting for 14 countries of the 33 that make up the region.