On Sunday, the Brazilian offshoot of the online news site the Intercept disclosed old private messages between now-Justice Minister Sérgio Moro and the task force of “Operation Car Wash,” the wide ranging corruption probestarted in 2014 that led to the conviction and jailing of former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, among many other high-profile figures. The messages show clear collusion between a judge and prosecutors to convict those involved in the operation. Beyond the immediate implications — such as the possible reversal of convictions and the political impact to Moro and to President Jair Bolsonaro’s plans to appoint him to the Supreme Court — it remains to be seen how Brazilians will react.
The dialogue between soybean producers and oilseed companies ended without an agreement on prices. Divisions and differences arise between small and large producers. The Santa Cruz-Beni road is totally blockaded, with eight points of conflict.
Workers took the Perembaise camp in a protest against China Railway Construction Corporation. The camp is located four kilometres from the road Rurrenabaque-Riberalta. Blockades were also recorded on the road. Workers demand that the Chinese company comply with Bolivian labour laws, and denounce the continued mistreatment of the Chinese personnel against Bolivian workers.
Bolivia and Paraguay focus their attention on the Bi-oceanic corridor and the waterway Paraná-Paraguay
Bolivia and Paraguay will install on Wednesday, in La Paz, the first binational cabinet to deal with the Bi-oceanic train project and the waterway Paraná-Paraguay, as well as defence and security issues. It is a public and private mission. “We are in a new phase of a fruitful and positive relationship with Bolivia and this relationship have to take advantage of our peoples, so we are here,” said Paraguay’s Foreign Minister, Luis A. Castiglioni.
Bolivia’s Central Bank warned that the global uncertainty provoked by US-China trade war will impact on the prices of raw material in Latin America. One of the most impacted commodities by the US-China trade conflict has been the soybean, which has seen a sharp drop in price to $290 per tonne, one of the lowest levels in recent years.
Bolivia’s external debt dropped to 23.5% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by April this year, announced the Economy Ministry. By the end of 2018, Bolivia’s external debt represented 25.1% of its GDP. The total amount of the debt grew from $4.9 billion in 2005 to $10.3 billion by the end of April 2019. In the same period, Bolivia’s GDB grew from $9.6 billion to $40.6 billion.
Google’s blocking of Huawei has impacted the sales of the Chinese mobile device in La Paz. Local vendors in La Paz said that the actions of Google have translated in a fall in sales of Chinese brands Huawei and “Honor”.
Standard & Poor’s projected Bolivia’s economic growth by 4% for the period 2019-2022. The rating agency also kept Bolivia’s qualification in BB- with a stable outlook in a complex international economic environment where countries like Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Argentina have seen their risk rate decreasing in the last six months. S&P economic projections for Bolivia coincide with those of other international organisations such as the IMF (4%), ECLAC (4.3%) and the World Bank (4%).
Bolivia has launched a cloud computing system called “Sovereign Cloud” with the aim of achieving technological sovereignty, announced the Ministry of Public Works. The project, similar to systems such as Dropbox or Google Drive, will allow state and private institutions to safely storage information on the internet. The system is already available and the government now is promoting it so private and state institutions can use it, said Public Works Minister, Oscar Coca.
The project to export electricity to Argentina will not begin on 25 May, as it was programmed, and it could be delayed until 2020, said the Argentinian Ambassador in Bolivia, Normando Alvarez. Bolivian state electricity company ENDE is building a transmission cable to export electricity to the north of Argentina, however bureaucratic procedures in both countries have delayed the project.