According to the latest report presented by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), total coca leaf production increased from 41,600 tons in 2018 to 46,100 tons in 2019, an increase of 11%. In 2018, some 17,422 tons of coca leaf did not pass through any of the authorized markets. In 2019, the amount that did not pass through these legal trading points rose to 22,223 tons, representing an increase of 27%.
In New York, the price of the US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) barrel, which refers to the export price of Bolivian gas, fell by 4.99% to $39.21.
Construction companies are in emergency mode because the public sector owes them about $350 million. Given the lack of Government’s payment, they are preparing a series of measures to be implemented until the authorities give a solution to the problem.
The national government assured a fund of Bs 300 million ($43.1 mn) for the advance payment of the Renta Dignidad bonus. The necessary resources are available to meet the benefit, which can be collected since August and will reach more than 870,000 elderly adults in the national territory.
The state-owned company Aurum (formerly Quipus) received yesterday the European quality certification for the first 5,000 computers exported to Portugal, informed Aurum’s general manager, Cristian Romero. Aurum’s general manager also said that the batch of 20,000 machines to be shipped to Europe is currently prepared.
Only 27% of the country’s construction companies renewed their business registration, amid a crisis in the sector caused by the Government’s failure to pay payrolls, which amount to nearly Bs 2.5 billion ($359.19 mn). The failure to update the trade register may be the result of the closure or paralysis of companies since the lack of updated documentation prevents them from continuing to develop their commercial activities in the sector.
Bolivia only produces 1.1 million tons and demand is 1.2 million. It is because there is a weakness in the sector to produce Dutch potato, used to make French fries. The cultivation of this variety in Bolivia barely represents 2%. The increase in the percentage of imports is an only pre-frozen peeled potato for making French fries.
According to data from the Financial System Regulatory Authority (ASFI), as of May this year, the financial system was reprogrammed with Bs 5.8 billion ($834 mn), almost double the amount readjusted in 2019. The growth occurs in challenging context due to the health emergency that the country is experiencing due to the coronavirus pandemic, in which the Legislative Assembly approved bill 720/2019 for the automatic deferral of credit payments to banks until December 31 this year.
The government authorized the transfer of Bs 500 million ($71.84 mn) from the collection of 2% of public and private employer contributions for housing to the Fogaviss Trust, to be administered by the Banco de Desarrollo Productivo (BDP), until July 31, 2020.
The restrictions that persist in some areas, like gastronomy, force the poultry sector to reduce its production by nearly 30 per cent because the demand for chicken dropped during the health emergency. The industry is working on new planning for post-pandemic production to avoid oversupply and price drops. From] 2,500 small farmers, at least 40 per cent stopped producing due to the loss of capital as a result of economic losses in previous months.