Experts of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) They urged Guatemala to eliminate social gaps but congratulated the country for its response to the Covid-19 pandemic, in an evaluation published this Friday.
In the short term, the country must continue to fight to “keep vulnerable segments of the population safe from possible new and sharp increases in food and energy prices,” they state in the periodic evaluation they carry out of their member countries, known as Article IV.
In the medium term, the experts urge to “open room for fiscal maneuver to eliminate social and infrastructure gaps” and “continue with the efforts already undertaken in terms of improvements in transparency and governance.”
“Swift, comprehensive and coordinated” policy responses to the pandemic in 2020 “laid the foundation for a robust recovery,” they say, estimating real GDP growth at around 8% in 2021, 4% in 2022 and 3.5%. % in the medium term.
This places the Guatemalan economy in a “very strong” position in the face of challenges and unusually pronounced uncertainty attributable to external factors, such as new variants of Covid-19, inflation, persistent supply chain disruptions, and possible changes in the attitude of investors towards risk that “could cause an abrupt tightening of international financial conditions”.
The volatility of the prices of raw materials, amplified by the war in Ukraine, “generates new uncertainty and could accelerate inflationary pressures”, increasing the prices of essential goods with possible effects on the most vulnerable populations, they warn.
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