Peru’s finance chief says free-market policies to stay
Miguel Castilla says Peru is committed to free-market policies, regardless of who is running the finance ministry
finance minister has sought to allay fears that a change at the
helm of the finance ministry could spell a retreat from the
investor-friendly economic policies of his nearly three-year
tenure, following intense speculation that he is set to step
down from his post.
there was a change in the management of the finance ministry
this year, be assured that whoever was in charge would continue
with the policies we’ve been pursuing," Miguel
Castilla told LatinFinance in an interview.
he refused to comment on whether his resignation was imminent,
he insisted the government remained committed to sound
macroeconomic management. "I reject any possibility of us going
towards populist policies," he said.
reports that Castilla was set to resign had raised concerns
over the direction of economic policy, especially following a
collapse in Peruvian president Ollanta Humala’s
popularity, which plummeted to 25% in March, according to
pollster Ipsos Peru.
said that while the government had enjoyed two years of high
ratings "there are costs to doing reforms that are unpopular,"
although he added that "the most important reforms have already
have raised concerns over Peru’s current account
deficit, at 5%. But Castilla said this sum would decline on the
back of a boost in mineral exports and economic recovery in the
US. "We see a gradual reduction of the current account deficit
from 5% to a level below 4% over the next three years," he
country’s GDP expanded 4.23% in January, the
slowest growth rate since last May, while exports revenues were
down 16% year-on-year However, Castilla said he is confident
that Peru’s economy will grow by at least 6% in
2014, thanks to an increase in copper output,
aggressive investment in infrastructure projects, robust
internal demand and a recovery in global growth.
only thing that we might be concerned about is in the scenario
of a 'sudden stop’ of capital flows [to Latin
America] or an increase in US interest rates in the future," he