Medellín (Colombia), Nov 9 (EFE) .- The political cycle in Latin America in 2018 worries economists as it is an electoral year in several countries of the region, which may impact on strategic decisions, said Gerardo Hernández, co-director of the Banco de la República (monetary authority) of Colombia.
"The political cycle is worrying, 75% of the population of Latin America next year will go to elections, "said Hernandez to intervene in the Sectoral Economic Forum of the Colombian Chamber of Construction (Camacol) held in Medellín.
Next year there will be presidential elections in large economies of the region, such as Brazil, Mexico and Colombia, but also in Costa Rica, Paraguay and Venezuela, to which we must add those of Chile, whose first round is held this month.
"There is undoubtedly a concern because we are all thinking that we need to grow more but for that We need structural reforms and many times that is not what the voters want to hear, "he said.
In the forum, organized by the Camacol regional office of the department of Antioquia (northwest), Hernandez added that structural reforms require time and effort and what the electorate wants from the presidential candidates are "solutions with effects of short term. "
" It is an element that is of major concern to all investors, "added the co-director of the Colombian monetary authority.
To this we must add "The countries of Latin America do not have the same strength in the event of a less benevolent external situation," he said.
Hernández also referred to the growth prospects economic growth next year for Latin American countries, among which Peru stands out, with 3.9%, after the 2.7% expected for this year, according to September projections of the Latin American Consensus Forecast.
"In Peru it seems that there will be a rebound," said the economist of the Banco de la República.
Bolivia (3.8%) followed after 4 (3.7%), also two tenths less than this year.
For Brazil an expansion of 2.2% is predicted after the 0.6% of 2017, while Argentina can increase of 2, 2.1 to 2.2%.
For Colombia, which is expected to grow around 1.8% this year, 2018 is more favorable, with a projection of 2.7%, " ideal would be "growth faster."
"The projections (of the Banco de la República) are of the order of 2.7%," said Hernández, who nevertheless added that this rhythm "It is not enough for what a country like Colombia needs."
On Venezuela, it can reduce the economic contraction from -7.6% this year to -2.7% in 2018.