The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) reported that it approved a US$130 million loan for Bolivia to support the short-term financial sustainability of Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) in the face of the Covid-19 crisis. It expects to benefit approximately 12,000 MSMEs affected by the disaster through loans granted through eligible financial institutions. More than … Continue reading IDB approves a $130 million loan for Bolivia to support Micro and Medium Enterprises
Exports of natural gas from Bolivia to Argentina have registered a notable increase since the last week of June, as the volume exceeds the maximum of 18 million cubic meters per day (MMm3d) established in the fourth addendum signed last March between the two countries. Gas sales to Argentina between June 25 and July 19 average approximately 19 MMm3d. The price of ca. three dollars per million BTUs is beneficial for Argentina because it is the time of highest demand.
The Covid-19 pandemic and its use in natural flu remedies caused demand to increase 500% over last year when producers reported an economic loss of 79 million Bolivians ($11.35 mn). Cochabamba is the leading honey producer in the country with 5,500 honey producers. Producers have tripled their production from 50 hives to 160. Given the success in sales of this product, there are new ventures of up to a thousand colonies.
Bolivia's main import products, diesel and gasoline, fell by 81% in value and 82% in volume due to the quarantine in the country because of the coronavirus pandemic. According to the estimate made by Jubilee Foundation, and considering the data observed in May, it estimates that this year the TGN could reach a saving of about 300 million dollars by the internment of fuels.
This 2020 Bolivia will be marked by a high fiscal deficit that will reach 13.5% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) according to a report by Torino Economics.
Since the declaration of a health emergency due to the coronavirus pandemic on 17 March, the Bolivian government has released Bs 7.527 billion ($1.08 billion) in more than 20 regulations approved by decree and national laws to alleviate the health and economic crisis.
Drug smuggling causes losses of $15 million through tax evasion, and formal employment in the country, the increase in drug prices is due to sporadic contracts by importers and lower production compared to imports. Drug imports account for about 80%, with local production accounting for the remainder, but in the pandemic, purchases of raw materials, as well as drugs, skyrocketed.
The board of directors of Servicio de Aeropuertos Bolivianos Sociedad Anónima (Sabsa), which is part of the Ministry of Public Works, has appointed Óscar Veizaga Siles as the new general manager, replacing Roberto Cortez. The company manages the operations of the international airports of El Alto in La Paz, Jorge Wilstermann in Cochabamba and Viru Viru in Santa Cruz.
The state-owned Empresa Siderúrgica Mutún expects to close the present administration with an export volume of 350,000 tons of iron, which will allow it to generate revenues estimated at $9 million. From Puerto Busch, Empresa Siderúrgica Mutún (ESM) shipped the first 25,700 tons of iron Fe 63% and Fe 65%, which it negotiated with Arcelor Mittal. The trade operation is for a total volume of 150,000 tons that will ship until December on the Paraguay-Paraná waterway. Also, ESM plans to add two multinationals, one from the United States and the other from China, to its portfolio of clients, with whom it expects to close two export contracts for a total volume of 200,000 tons of iron.
In February of this year, Total and Gazprom, partners in the Azero block, began drilling the Ñancahuazú X1 well, with an investment of $73 million. According to YPFB, this is an exploratory project that has a high potential for natural gas that will be confirmed later when it reaches 5,500 meters deep. It has generated conflict between the governments of Santa Cruz and Chuquisaca, which on Tuesday ratified the defence of the Ñancahuazú X1 well, located within its territory.