IDB Urges Increased Productivity to Drive Caribbean Growth


Above: Inter-American Development Bank President Luis Alberto Moreno (Photo: OECD)

By the Caribbean Journal staff

High volatility took a toll on regional growth in Latin America and the Caribbean in 2013, according to the Inter-American Development Bank.

Regional GDP growth was around 2.7 percent this year, with a projected growth of 3 percent for Latin America and the Caribbean in 2014.

The solution, according to Inter-American Development Bank President Luis Alberto Moreno, is to increase regional productivity.

“A less favorable external environment, along with weak external demand over the mid-term and latent risks in international financial markets, will require the region to accelerate growth without depending on the external conditions that helped us in the past decade,” Moreno said.

Moreno pointed to several ways to enhance growth, including improved quality of eduction, infrastructure investment and improved logistical services.

“Our priority is to increase potential output over the medium term through reforms focusing on bottlenecks that are restricting growth in productivity, internal savings and investment,” Moreno said.

The Inter-American Development Bank approved 167 financing packages in 2013 totaling $14 billion, its highest single year of financing since 2009, when it financed $15.9 billion following the outbreak of the global financial crisis.

A plurality of the loans focused on institutional development.