The EFE news agency reports that Bolivia (1.47%), Peru (1.9%) And Paraguay (2.8%) saw the lowest inflation during 2019, while Argentina (53.8%) and Venezuela (7,374.4%.) had the highest rates in Latin America. Brazil recorded 4.31%, Chile 3% and Uruguay 7.89%.
Fuel imports in Bolivia increased by 29% between January and October 2019 compared to the same period in 2018. In value, the increase is 26%. The National Hydrocarbons Agency (ANH) considers biodiesel production a challenge to reduce foreign exchange output by import and diesel subsidy, as well as lower pollution rates generated by fossil fuels.
The National Chamber of Industries (CNI) proposed the Government to increase the basic salary by 1.47% and to freeze the national minimum wage at Bs.2122 ($307.06). CNI’s economist explained that the proposal to freeze the minimum wage is because of the lost of competitiveness in Bolivia’s companies, while the increase on the basic salary is be in line with 2019’s inflation.
Bolivia’s external debt reached $11.056 billion as of November last year, which represents 26% of Bolivia’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). According to the president of Bolivia’s Central Bank (BCB) the current ratio is under the international standards. Bolivia’s external debt increased from $2.269 billion in 2007 to the mentioned $11.056 billion in November.
A technical commission from Bolivia is in Argentina to start negotiations for the signing of a new addendum to the gas purchase agreement and to stabilize the volumes demanded by the neighbouring country. Bolivia’s YPFB president, Herland Soliz, explained that the current contract addendum establishes export volumes of Bolivian gas of between 16 and 18 million cubic meters per day (MMmcd) in winter and from 10 MMmcd to 11 MMmcd in Summer.
As of January 9, 2020, Bolivia’s net international reserves reached $6.429 billion, said the president of the Central Bank of Bolivia, Guillermo Aponte. According to Aponte, international reserves reached $15.1 billion in 2014, but have gradually declined since then due to external factors and falling exports.
The internal debt of Bolivia’s General Treasury (TGN) reached as of October 2019 an internal debt of of $5.95 billion, which is equal to 13.8% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of around $43 billion, reported the Economy Minister, Jose Luis Parada.
The World Bank estimates that Bolivia’s economy will grow 3% in 2020. According to the organisation, the economy slowed down due to the political and social conflict in the country. It estimates that Bolivia’s GDP will grow 3.2% in 2021 and 3.4% in 2022.
The livestock sector has exported 3,000 tons of beef for $16 million to China. Óscar Ciro Pereyra, president of the Santa Cruz Cattlemen’s Federation (Fegasacruz), reported that there is a surplus of 40,000 tons of beef that can be exported, in addition to China, to markets such as Russia. Also, production for domestic consumption is around 200,000 tons, which has generated an income of $500 million.
According to the National Institute of Statistics (INE), manufacturing industry exports between January and November 2019 reached $3.3 billion, representing 40% of Bolivia’s total exports. Metallic gold is the main product, whose sales abroad reached $1.5 billion.