During the first quarter of 2018, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Bolivia grew by 71%, according to the Bolivia Institute of International Trade (IBCE). FDI reached $US257 million during the first three months of 2018, pushed by the hydrocarbons sector ($US109.3 million) and the manufacturing industry ($US92.8 million)
Bolivia is among the fastest growing economies in Latin America, according to various international organisations. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Economic Commission for Latin America (ECLA) increased Bolivia’s growth projections from 4 to 4.3% and the World Bank from 3.9 to 4.5%. These organisations place Bolivia in first or second place in regional growth. However, international experts such as CAF president Enrique Garcia, the country needs significant structural adjustments to diversify the economy that is highly dependent on hydrocarbons and minerals.
The nationalised Mallku Khota mine could benefit Bolivia with $US 8.8 bn based in its deposits of silver, plumber, zinc and gallium. Bolivia won an international arbitrage against Canada’s Andean Silver and will have to pay only $US18.7 million to the Canadian firm.
Although Argentina and Brazil expressed their intention of buying less volume of gas, the Bolivian government believes that there are opportunities. In the case of Brazil, the Hydrocarbon Minister, Luis Alberto Sanchez, said that the new conditions of the Brazilian market offer the chance to negotiate with private companies with the prospect of better prices. Gas exports to Brazil and Argentina reduce 16.7% since 2014. The government recognises that the development of new camp fields in these countries means strong competition, but it is confident in Bolivia’s competitiveness. However, Bolivia’s local governments and economic experts warned that the decrease in shipments would impact revenues, and they urged more investment in the sector.