The Fraser Institute of Canada's ranking, which analyzes mining investment conditions in the world, once again placed Bolivia at the bottom of its list. In the 2020 index, the country appears in 74th place out of 76 nations and territories analyzed in the general ranking of mining attractiveness. In recent years, Bolivia has always occupied one of the last ten positions. The scale combines the Mining Potential Best Practices index, which rates countries and territories according to their geological attractiveness, and the Mining Policy Perception index measures the effects of government policy on exploration investment.
According to the latest report from the National Statistics Institute (INE), exports from the hydrocarbons sector of February 2021 fell by 29.0%, compared to the same period in 2020. Currently, sales generated by hydrocarbons represent 22% of national exports. On the other hand, non-traditional exports rebounded. The main products that increased their exports year-on-year were soybean products by 69.4%, tin metal by 42.4% and beef by 96.0%.
The World Bank (WB) projected that Bolivia's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) would grow by 4.7% this year, an estimate that exceeds the Fiscal Financial Program's projection of 4.4%.
ACI Sytems and the Bolivian State have initiated a conciliation process to save the agreement reached and discarded during the Morales administration. The project will try to reactivate the joint venture to industrialize lithium from the Uyuni salt flat. The Government announced that they would look for other actors as well.
Foreign direct investment (FDI) in 2020 (data as of the third quarter) reached US$121 million, which represents a 65.9% drop compared to 2019 figures, according to data from the Central Bank of Bolivia (BCB). The stoppage of activities explains the decline due to the pandemic.
The US agency S&P Global Ratings changed Bolivia's risk rating outlook from stable to negative. The assessment based on the fall of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the increase of external indebtedness and the high fiscal deficit. Although this is a change in the outlook for the time being, the international agency does not rule out lowering its risk rating in the next 6 to 18 months.
The resignation of the Development Bank of Latin America (CAF) executive president, Luis Carranza Ugarte, a year ahead of schedule due to political pressure from Argentina, may harm Bolivia, such as limited access to credit.
In 2020, exports of domestic products to the United States fell by 34 per cent compared to last year. In 2020, Bolivian sales to the United States totalled 296 million dollars; in 2019, the country had exported 435 million, and in 2018 had shipped an amount of 504 million.
The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) predicted a difficult recovery of the Latin American and Caribbean economy due to the debacle caused by the pandemic and announced that it would require new resources to face the emergency. The region will emerge from the crisis with higher indebtedness, poverty, and an increase in income inequality. Extreme poverty will jump from 12.1% to 14.6% due to the unemployment caused by the crisis, further deteriorating countries dependent on tourism and exporting raw materials.
Brazil's antitrust agency, CADE, approved the acquisition by Belgium's Fluxys of Total Gas & Power Brasil's 33.33% stake in BBPP Holdings, which owns 29% of Transportadora Brasilera Gasoducto Bolivia-Brasil (TBG), and will now own 37% of TBG, which operates a 2,600km pipeline network (Gasbol) that moves gas from Bolivia to Brazil. Brazil's state-owned Petrobras controls TBG, whose 51% stake is for sale. Bolivian state-owned YPFB owns the remaining 12%.