Small gastronomic establishments reduced 50% of their staff, income fell to 10%, and the average number of establishments closed was 221 in a month. The business sector supports the measures established by the Government but also demands that all of the economic activities, especially small businesses, receive the necessary support to face the coming financial crisis.
Oil prices continue to fall and today the WTI barrel, the benchmark for Bolivia, reached its lowest rate in 17 years at $22.67. Bolivia calculated the General State Budget (GSB) for 2020 with a reference price of $59.87 a barrel of oil. So far, there is a decrease of $37.2 (62%), which will mean a drop in the country’s income from gas exports to Argentina and Brazil.
The significant drop in international oil prices that will affect the value of Bolivia’s natural gas exports is expected to fall by some $850.5 million, 2% of GDP, by 2020. In the case of oil imports, the State expects savings of $271.7 million, 0.7% of GDP. The net impact would be a decrease of 1.3% of the GDP, in value of $578.8 million. The president of YPFB asked sub-national governments to re-evaluate their projects.
80% of the 3,500 companies in Cochabamba have economic problems due to the measures taken to stop the advance of Covid-19. The Federation of Tourist Activities and Entertainment Cochabamba (FATEC), which brings together discos, bars, liquor stores, nightclubs and musicians, reported that more than 13,000 members have no way to generate economic resources and are asking for support.
The Government will allocate just over 776 million ($111.5) bolivianos for the so-called Bono Familia which will reach more than 1.5 million primary school students in the fiscal and agreement sector. Each low-income family will receive 500 bolivianos ($71.83) for each child in a public school to minimize the impact of the coronavirus health crisis.