Central America in focus
May 31, 2018 |
Where economic expansion and social tensions are growing side by side (Photo: Falco Ermert - CC by 2.0)
Growth, but also socio-economic tensions.
That is the current scenario in Central America.
The pursuit of economic diversification shows in ambitious agendas to lure investors and channel foreign capital into its agribusiness, outsourcing services, manufacturing, real estate and tourism industries.
Meanwhile the region’s energy needs and high electricity costs require in-depth collaboration, government support and investment from local and international players. Early success of The Central American Electrical Interconnection System (SIEPAC) is leading to further expansion of the network and bringing with it the need for financial innovation.
Panama’s healthy economic performance spurred by big ticket projects revolving around the Panama Canal expansion has drawn international attention and investments, but the region’s financial markets are dominated by sovereign and quasi-sovereign issuance complemented by cross-border funding by financial institutions and loans from some of the larger corporates.
Central American stock markets are tackling liquidity, with market activity focusing on integration efforts. Growth in capital needs may foster a perception change of private tightly-held corporates that so far remain faithful to traditional banking institutions.
Panama’s Finance Minister Dulcidio De La Guardia, Honduras Minister of Economic Development Arnaldo Castillo, Nicaragua’s Stock Exchange CEO Gerard Arguello, Dominican Republic’s Stock Exchange Chairman Gregory Salcedo Llibre will be among a group of government officials and business leaders examining these issues at LatinFinance's 4th Central America Finance & Investment Forum in Panama City on Thursday.
LatinFinance will bring you coverage of the event throughout the day.LF