(prensa.com) Economies in Central America will grow at an average of 4 percent in 2011, driven by external demand for local goods, remittances from emigrants and, specifically, the projected strong growth of Panama‘s economy.
That projection was released yesterday by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which said that Panama‘s economy will grow at 7.4 percent this year. In fact, Panama and Costa Rica are the only two countries in the region that will see their economies grow above the 4 percent average for the region, which shows the imbalances that exist.
The IMF said the major problem facing the region is the risk of inflation motivated by high prices for food and fuel.
Panama will be the economic engine of the region, the report said, with a growth rate of 7.4 percent in 2011 and 7.2 percent in 2012, and inflation rates of 4.9 percent and 4.4 percent, respectively.
Its debt level is expected to remain consistent at 12.5 percent of GDP.
Costa Rica is expected to have growth of 4.3 percent, but an inflation increase of 6 percent, leading to concerns that its economy will be “overheated.” The country’s debt level, however, is much lower, at 4.5 percent of GDP.