Wednesday, May 11th 2011 - 08:00 UTC

Chile will become first develop country in Latam, says world’s richest man

Chile will become the first developed country in Latin America, predicted Mexican communications mogul Carlos Slim, the richest man in the world, in an economic presentation given in Honduras last Thursday.

Mexican mogul Carlos Slim says Chile still has to improve education and poverty levels

The criteria that constitute which nations are and are not considered developed are a subject of some debate. Among criteria considered are economic factors such as GDP, per capita, personal income per capita, and industrialization.

GDP is the value of all goods and services provided by a country in a given year. GDP per capita essentially describes the production value of the average person in that country.

International estimates for Chile’s per capita GDP in 2010 ranged between US$11,800 and US$11,900, according to the International Monetary Fund and the CIA World Factbook respectively (nominal GDP values are converted at market exchange rates to US dollars).

Slim, estimated by Forbes magazine in March to possess a US$74 billion fortune, said there are already countries in Latin America that are at an advanced economic level due to massive industrial advances in the past century. These companies include Brazil, Chile and Mexico.

“In the case of Latin America, I believe Chile will be the first to break that barrier (of underdevelopment)” Slim said. “Brazil, Colombia, Argentina, and Mexico will probably be next.”

He cited the booming mining industry in northern Chile as being largely responsible for the country’s march toward official classification as a developed country.

However, Slim said that Chile still needs to improve education and poverty levels in order to be considered a developed country.

According to Slim, the only way to combat poverty is by improving education and creating jobs. Chilean President Sebastian Piñera has voiced his plans to increase the availability of grants for technical education, and is expected to outline his specific plans to do so in his upcoming state of the union address on May 21.

Slim said that despite not producing at the GDP level of some developed countries around the world, one advantage for Latin American countries is that they don’t have the massive amount of national debt that many countries, including the United States, are experiencing.

“We have a secure financial system with a stable macroeconomic foundation,” predicted the Mexican billionaire. “We can say that we are secure because we don’t have an overly-complicated structure.”

By Zach Simon – Santiago Times

48 comments Feed

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1 ElaineB (#) May 11th, 2011 - 08:40 am Report abuse
I thought this was a given. Economically speaking, it is the good house in a bad neighbourhood.

“However, Slim said that Chile still needs to improve education and poverty levels in order to be considered a developed country.”

I could not agree more. The poor distribution of wealth is holding this country back and education is the way out of poverty for many.
2 Retroqqq (#) May 11th, 2011 - 09:07 am Report abuse
Slim said that despite not producing at the GDP level of some developed countries around the world, one advantage for Latin American countries is that they don’t have the massive amount of national DEBT that many countries, including the United States, are experiencing.

This is the most important paragraph.
3 Martin_Fierro (#) May 11th, 2011 - 09:54 am Report abuse
“Chile will become first develop country in Latam, says world’s richest man...”

Okay... lol
4 Typhoon (#) May 11th, 2011 - 05:21 pm Report abuse
Did anybody ever think it might be Argentina? Hasn't yet progressed beyond the Dark Ages!
5 ElaineB (#) May 11th, 2011 - 06:10 pm Report abuse
The situation with Argentina is that it was a developed country, albeit a long time ago, and it lost it. Which is a real pity. And each time it looks promising it seems determined to push the self-destruct button again. JMO
6 GeoffWard (#) May 11th, 2011 - 06:21 pm Report abuse
No, nobody imagined it would be Argentina, similarly nobody imagines it will be Brasil - because of the vast hinterland requiring basic development. Little pockets of Developed world in a vast continent of backwardness.
7 Fido Dido (#) May 11th, 2011 - 06:28 pm Report abuse
Today 2011, you are developed as in the so called wes: when you shop at wal mart, buy and use made in china Iphone's and Ipads, work your ass off to pay of your debt and bills, specially the cell phone bill and mortgage, buy and eat burgers, fries or a salad at Mcdonalds, buy and drink your coffee at starbucks, have 4 or more credit cards in your wallet, bitch about the high gas prices and about the decline of the value of your house, watch dancing the stars on your made in china flat screen tv you bought at wal mart, use twitter and play farmville and in the summer vacation visit Disney world.
8 ElaineB (#) May 11th, 2011 - 06:39 pm Report abuse
You seem to be basing that scenario on a stereotype of the US. I live in a developed country and don't fit any of that decription. Just saying.
9 Fido Dido (#) May 11th, 2011 - 07:09 pm Report abuse
I live in a developed country and don't fit any of that decription.

The UK is soooo developed that all their banks needed a bailout that still squeezes the peasants who enjoyed the royal wedding (same banks will come back for another bailout, soon :D), they eat fish and chips, have “great” teeth ( The UK has “excellent” government “free” health care with a “short” waiting list..lol), listen to BBC or Sky News or both and watch the x-factor. Yeah, the UK so sooo developed. Elaine, inflation is still under control there? Oh sure it is, we're not Argentina (Elaine's answer)
blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/danielhannan/100080317/uk-inflation-rate-is-now-higher-than-zimbabwes/
10 ElaineB (#) May 11th, 2011 - 07:22 pm Report abuse
Um, it is very difficult to have a reasoned conversation with an unreasonable person. The fact is the UK is a developed country no matter that it annoys you.

I still don't fit any of the stereotypes you are so fond of.

Back on topic. It is pleasing to see Chile begin to reap the rewards of managing their economy so well.
11 jakesnake (#) May 11th, 2011 - 07:57 pm Report abuse
One of the big challenges for Chile is “la pobla”... the poblaciones where the government has provided free or extremely cheap housing to poor people. While this is great in that they have a roof, running water, etc., it is leading to very high birth rates in these areas. Many of the births are to girls who are 14 or 15 years old. A LOT of them. These girls often end up not finishing high school and they become almost entirely dependent on their parents. It's a vicious circle in that the kids of these kids having kids end up having kids when they're very young as well. Until they do something about this, it's going to be a huge burden on Chile. One other thing regarding “la pobla”.... There are many adults, men and women in their late 20's or early 30's who don't have any incentive to work because their parents let them sponge off of them and the parents never say, “get a job, or get out of the house”. This is rampant in “la pobla” in Chile. Their parents just say, “pero es mi hijo, que puedo hacer?” Another big problem. Chile has a lot going for it that is very positive, but they have some huge problems to overcome as well.
12 so_far (#) May 11th, 2011 - 08:07 pm Report abuse
#8 hmm. “I live in a developed country and don't fit any of that decription”

www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-13081777

www.savethechildren.org.uk/en/docs/Severe_Child_Poverty_In_England_February2011.pdf

www.guardian.co.uk/society/joepublic/2011/may/11/disabled-people-hardest-hit-march-in-london?INTCMP=SRCH

seem to me that UK share the same problems than undevelop coutries isn´t ?

could be a big fake the UK standard of life with continous gov help ?
13 ElaineB (#) May 11th, 2011 - 08:37 pm Report abuse
@ 11 I totally agree that Chile has a way to go with social policy.

The strict class strata and lack of social mobility has to be a contributing factor to the problems you highlight. Time and again I am told that jobs go to friends and family and unless you know someone it is hard to find a good job.

As for the teenage girls getting pregnant, well, it takes a man to impregnate them. You can't lay the blame entirely on the women.
14 jakesnake (#) May 11th, 2011 - 08:46 pm Report abuse
After I wrote it, I knew somebody would take it that way. I was in no way blaming the girls for getting pregnant. I was blaming the whole idea of the poblaciones as allowing the environment to be created and perpetuate as to lead to a high teen pregnancy rate.
15 ElaineB (#) May 11th, 2011 - 09:09 pm Report abuse
@ 14. No worries. I understood the point you were making and agree it is a problem. But I had to raise the point because of the gender imbalance in SoAm. I have often heard women referred to as 'witches' in Chile.

I could tell you some very amusing stories travelling as a solo woman in Argentina and Chile. : )
16 jakesnake (#) May 11th, 2011 - 09:14 pm Report abuse
I believe that. I'm married to a Chilena and have traveled up and down the length of both countries extensively. I love both countries, but man the men there can be complete ......I won't use the word. You get the point...:)
17 ElaineB (#) May 11th, 2011 - 09:50 pm Report abuse
@ 16 I know exactly what you mean. : ) It is quite a culture shock when you expect relative equality as standard behaviour. As a visitor I find it more amusing than offensive but I am not sure I could accept it without a fight if I lived there permanently.

Like you, I love both countries but could never accept that a man should be paid a higher wage for the same job just because he has a dick. *shakes head* I could go on ........

Sometimes the concern for a woman travelling alone is sweet but most questions seem to be establishing if I am available! lol.
18 artillero601 (#) May 11th, 2011 - 11:03 pm Report abuse
@17 E, did you say the “D” word ?? Shame on you .....lol!!

“However, Slim said that Chile still needs to improve education and poverty levels in order to be considered a developed country.” ... an a Mexican said this?? En casa de herrero, cuchillo de palo. JMO
19 Martin_Fierro (#) May 12th, 2011 - 06:33 am Report abuse
Uh, can one of you experts explain to me why Chile is so far superior and so much smarter than both Argentina and Brazil?

What kind of massive natural resources do they rely on?
Which types of industries do the excel at exactly?

All the major industrial and political developments emanate from Argentina and Brazil, usually... jointly. But Chile will somehow surpass them both.

I get all the anti-Argentine sentiment, but don't be ridiculous.
20 GeoffWard (#) May 12th, 2011 - 11:00 am Report abuse
Martin #19:

”. . . . . because of the vast hinterland requiring basic development. Little pockets of Developed World (some of the bigger cities) in a vast continent of backwardness.” (#6)

Chile Superior? Probably not.

Natural resources and industry? You know this already.

Industry and Politics given to them by Ar & Br? You are joking
21 ElaineB (#) May 12th, 2011 - 11:34 am Report abuse
@ 18. Ooops. It slipped out. *cue appropriate smutty joke*

@ 19. It is not about superiorty or a popularity contest. Developed countries are classified in a number of ways - I am sure you can google them - but primarily on economic grounds, as mentioned in the article. There are also 'human development' issues to consider and I think Mr. Slim mentioned that Chile has to address this area before they can truly be considered a developed country. I happen to agree with this point.

For many decades Chile has managed their economy well and this cannot be said of many of its' neighbouring countries that have lived in economic turmoil. Chile's good housekeeping has enabled them to have stability, enjoy steady growth, improvements to standards of living and, very importantly, gained the trust of investors.

And just because a country is classed as 'developed' it does not indicate utopian status; all countries have problems. It does generally indicate a better standard of living.

I have absolutely no anti-Argentine feelings at all.
22 jakesnake (#) May 12th, 2011 - 12:24 pm Report abuse
First of all, Marty has anger management problems. If you read Merco Press regularly, you'll see his ramblings. Rarely do they make any sense at all. Secondly, he's clearly one of the many Argentines who look at that little sliver of a country to their west and see that they've gotten rid of a lot of their corruption, they've encouraged private investment, and they've been able to grow their economy drastically without the too much of the “I” word... inflation. Marty, go to the immigration office in Santiago and see how many Argentines are standing in line trying to immigrate to Chile. Then, go to the immigration office in Buenos Aires and see how many Chilenos are trying to immigrate to Argentina. You already know the answer.
23 Artillero601 (#) May 12th, 2011 - 01:14 pm Report abuse
Question to the Forum, Did Chile benefit from the Military process? before the attacks begin from both sides of the aisle, I have to admit that I did not like what Chile did in 82 BUT putting myself in their shoes, I would probably have done the same thing specially when in 78 we almost invaded them ......
24 ElaineB (#) May 12th, 2011 - 01:34 pm Report abuse
Thanks, I had noticed his reluctancy to engage in reasoned discussion but I hoped he might.

I don't know about the immigration lines but just hopping from one country to the other the differences in the economies is immediately apparent.
25 ManRod (#) May 12th, 2011 - 02:28 pm Report abuse
Martin@ 3# and 19#.
How come I knew you'd be the first one to start the denial ?
Your antichilean patterns are so simplistic and previsible :D

@ Artillero 23: This is a question, which probably will never be answered. Maybe yes, maybe no. We don't know, what would have happened with Allende still on power after 73. Probably he might have continued the process towards so called “real socialism” he wanted a, version of Cuba-light, or maybe his government wouldn't have been elected anymore, due to increasing dissatisfaction of the population due to the self inflicted economic crisis ( YES, self inflicted, and not by the CIA, their influence is nowerdays so overrated, unless you can prove me, that they “ordered” Allende to print money non stop, disappropriation of private companies and lands with food shortages as result, etc...). Maybe Chile would have started a civil economic recovery even earlier than it did midth of the 80ies in the post-allende period.

From the social point of view, Chile did not benefit of the military process. The scars are very deep in society. Society has been taught to “function” and to defer individualism. This is changing since some years, but this pattern and traces will not dissapear too soon.
26 Artillero601 (#) May 12th, 2011 - 03:17 pm Report abuse
@24 Elaine, politics aside, right now, what is the social inter action between Islanders and Argentines? and honest question.....I'm curious to know
27 ElaineB (#) May 12th, 2011 - 03:26 pm Report abuse
@26 Islanders? Can you qualify? I may be being thick here. : )
28 Artillero601 (#) May 12th, 2011 - 03:31 pm Report abuse
@27 I do apologize if i used the incorrect word ... People from Falkland?
29 ElaineB (#) May 12th, 2011 - 03:45 pm Report abuse
@28. Ahhh, no problem. I am not from those Islands. Did you think I was? I am from an island, English and a British Citizen. I can only speak from that perspective if you are interested.
30 Artillero601 (#) May 12th, 2011 - 03:49 pm Report abuse
Yes, I thought you lived there .... my bad ! I asked the question because you wrote about the exchanges with people throughout South America ....
31 ElaineB (#) May 12th, 2011 - 04:09 pm Report abuse
Ok, well, I live in England but spend on average about six to seven months of each year in South America at the moment. It is mostly work related but I include a fair bit of pleasure during my time there. I am heading back early next month, via a couple of weeks in Washington DC.

From my perspective, I have never personally encountered any overtly anti-English behaviour towards me whilst in Argentina. Maybe some gentle teasing and a few robust discussions but never the kind of invective I have witnessed on this forum. I have made some great friends there that I am sure will be life-long.

I could say more if you are interested.

What is your opinion?
32 Sergio Vega (#) May 12th, 2011 - 04:33 pm Report abuse
After a time enough to read all the comments, as a Chilean, I have some thing to say.
First, before the “never well evaluated” Allende´s office term, Chilean economic way was through “statised” and import replacement, with high import taxes, so we were many light-years back from the developed countries. That means that if the Allendes Gvt. were no reelected, probably we would continued the previous way...so far keeping us in the under developed world for ever....So, was the Military Gvt. a good change for us in any order of matter???? YES, IT WAS !!!! We change our looser mind for a challenging winner mind, a new way to see the future so big that even the “return” to the democracy the leftist Gvts. kept the economic model (not so well executed, BTW) for 20 years. Now, with the new Gvt. the change will be deeper and faster to get our goal to be a developed country, no matter if the first or the second, but developed....We had the opportunity some years ago, but leftist didn´t do it well enough to reach it.
Second, is Chile superior than other LATAM countries ? Probably not, of course..but we have done our homework better, a lot, than the remaining LATAN countries...no doubt, even we could do it the best with other kind of Gvt., no leftist...certainly.
Third, will be enough with the required GDP incomes to feel us as a developed country ? Of course, not...We have a really big challenge to win...like improving education (we are in the good way now, fortunately), improving job opportunities (this year were created over new 400.000 jobs), improving richness share (through education, job opportunities, less corruption, etc.).
Fourth, the social scares will never end while the leftist redhat don´t recognize that all had started because their wrong policies and ways to impose them to us during Allende´s term...and stop to blame to all others for their own guilt...
It´s my humble opinnion, naturelly....
33 Martin_Fierro (#) May 13th, 2011 - 07:03 am Report abuse
20 GeoffWard,
“Industry and Politics given to them by Ar & Br? You are joking”

I have no idea of what you tried to say, please explain.

22 jakesnake
“...go to the immigration office in Santiago and see how many Argentines are standing in line trying to immigrate to Chile”

Emigration from Chile to Argentina is constant, particularly those Chileans of middle class that aspire to a higher level of education. There are approximately 500.000 Chileans living in Argentina.

In contrast, there are approximately 90.000 Argentines living in Chile.

Chile population: 17 million
Argentina population: 41 million

GOOGLE IT.

22 jakesnake, 25 ManRod,

You couldn't be more wrong, I have nothing against Chile. I was simply pointing out an inaccuracy. Clearly neither one of you has read any of my previous posts about Chile.

I'm the only one in this forum that's suggested several times, that Chile and Argentina should agree on a joint sovereignty over Antarctica.

I had a conversation with Sergio Vega above, recently, and even though we disagreed I treated him with nothing but respect. Sergio if you think this isn't true please let everyone know.

The truth is that this article is designed to instill animosity, to drive a wedge between groups. Apparently this is the only method Mercopress relies on to get attention... we can rule out serious journalism.

All of South America is increasingly integrating, rather than competing, that is the model of Unasur. So take this article Mercopress and shove it where the light don't shine.
34 GeoffWard (#) May 13th, 2011 - 10:03 am Report abuse
Martin, re your #19:

Ar = Argentina, Br = Brasil
“You are joking” In English, this means that your assertion is seriously doubted
35 briton (#) May 13th, 2011 - 12:16 pm Report abuse
that Chile and Argentina should agree on a joint sovereignty over Antarctica.
so now you want to rule the whole of antarctica, might i suggest sovereignty over Africa as well, perhaps middle and north America,
hey, i know, why not build an empire while you are at it,
[ Martin_Fierro ] your ideas are impressive, but to be truthfull, you and chile have more chance of finding atlantis on friday the 13th.
Than ever getting all of antarctica, but no doubt with British help, we can come to some deal lolol,,,,,,,,,justa joka
36 ManRod (#) May 13th, 2011 - 12:54 pm Report abuse
Martin, its true that Argentina has more Chilean originated immigrants than other way round, though according to the official census there, it's a lower amount than the one you indicated (not half a million, but aprox 250 to 300k ). These Chileans live in Argentina for some generations and have had kids, which in Argentina are still identified as Chileans.
They are integrated into Argentinian society and do not consider “returning” to Chile, many of them consider themselfs Argentinans, as they lived for decades or even were born there.

Furthermore, the detail you do not mention is, the vast majority of these Chileans have moved to Argentina between 1950 and the 70ies, originally due to economic reasons in the 50ies and the oil boom in Patagonia, but later due to political asylum during the Pinochet dictatorship.
Now, the 90.000 Argentines in Chile you mentioned, have almost all migrated to Chile between 2000 and 2010, and I can assure you, that in this period migration from Chile to Argentina was definitely lower. Indeed, since 1990, the balance regarding movement of Chileans from Argentina to Chile is higher than the ones migrating to Argentina. This might be the reason for Jakesnakes observation:

“...go to the immigration office in Santiago and see how many Argentines are standing in line trying to immigrate to Chile”

You write:
“The truth is that this article is designed to instill animosity”

Do you see it like that? Do you think that Slim Helu had this intention, when he outlined the countries he first expects to reach the level of an developped nation? I am not sure about that, I guess this is rather your personal and somehow emotional interpretation. I do not see reasons for any drama in what Slim Helu states. Actually he just reflects something which is quite known. He's no nostradamus to reveal what economist already say since some time. Looks like this fact is the one that bothers you, is it?
37 Monty69 (#) May 14th, 2011 - 12:04 am Report abuse
26 Artillero601
I can have a go at answering your question.
Before 1982, there seem to have been quite strong social links between the Islands and 'the Coast'. People went from here to Argentina for work or education, and some Islanders were born there. Some people still have family ties and friendships from that time and still visit Argentina.
Since 1982, most of that seems to have stopped. No-one is educated there, we use different hospitals and most people would rather go on holiday to Chile. I understand that quite a few Argentines visit the islands, some of them on cruise ships.
38 Martin_Fierro (#) May 14th, 2011 - 01:36 am Report abuse
34 GeoffWard,

All the major industries are in Argentina and Brazil. Mercosur originated in Argentina and Brazil. Unasur started as a conglomerate strongly promoted by Brazil, without Brazil's initiative Unasur would probably still be in the drawing board.

35 briton,
No stupid, only our sector of Antarctica.

36 ManRod,

You're the one getting emotional, I'm just pointing out facts. I'm not bothered in the least by Chile succeeding, on the contrary. And I don't give two shits what Slim Helu's intention is, I was referring to Mercopress.
39 GeoffWard (#) May 14th, 2011 - 11:08 am Report abuse
Martin #38,

Chile's export success and world trade profile has little to do with Argentina (or Brasil for that matter).

Copper, Salmonid farming, seasonal fruits, wine, chemicals , (financial services) - all these have relatively massive trade relations with the USA, the EU and with China.

This places Chile's economic model far ahead of that of Argentina.
40 Artillero601 (#) May 14th, 2011 - 11:56 am Report abuse
@37 Thanks !!!
41 ElaineB (#) May 14th, 2011 - 03:08 pm Report abuse
@39. Do you think the fact that Chile is an associate member of Mercosur and, therefore, able to sign free-trade agreements with, say, the US and China, has helped their economics?
42 GeoffWard (#) May 14th, 2011 - 03:24 pm Report abuse
Elaine, I am *no expert* on this,

but I doubt that Chile's status wrt Mercosur has any bearing on its FTAs.
Probably its status within CAN has no bearing in practical terms either.

South American countries are falling over themselves to make bilateral agreements outside their trading blocs - largely, I think, because it takes years (centuries?) of maturity and trust, to have primary faith in the ultimately better benefits of their embryonic trading blocs.
43 ElaineB (#) May 14th, 2011 - 03:56 pm Report abuse
Geoff, that is interesting, thanks. I wondered as Chile were blocked from becoming full members of Mercosur when it sign a free-trade agreement with the US. It just had me wondering if being a full member restricted the ability to make independent agreements. I should research it more. :)

I have heard a lot of muttering in South America about just how successful Mercosur has been in reality.
44 briton (#) May 14th, 2011 - 07:30 pm Report abuse
Martin_Fierro I take it you dont like chile,
and you only want that bit if the ice, that you are claiming,
is anybody else claiming that bit of antartica, and why are you claiming it ,
45 ManRod (#) May 15th, 2011 - 12:02 am Report abuse
Elaine, Chile has not been blocked to enter Mercosur. Chile has been invited to enter as a full member, but denied itself due to own FTA oriented economic model. This is opposite to models like Argentina and Brazil. Those 2 countries have a consideable internal market they can nourish, and their aim is to form a regional protectionistic market, which makes the smaller ones dependent on them. Chile is a relatively small country, and its economic scheme does not aim to satisfy its own market, but to specify on economic areas to trade worldwide.
Export what we are best on, import what we suck at...

Both models are not right or wrong, but accomodate to local circumstances. If Chile would have joined Mercosur, it could not incentive its exports the way it does today.
46 ElaineB (#) May 15th, 2011 - 09:02 am Report abuse
@45 Thanks. That is interesting. Chile has established trade agreements with many countries which has to be a sensible move for a smallish country. I often hear people saying that Chile relies too much on copper exports but, given the demand and price, why wouldn't the country reap the benefits. And in recent times other areas of business have been developed to diversify.

Back to Mercosur, I have been watching with amusement at the attempts by Venesuela to become a full member and the repeated blocking. I would be interested to hear people's thoughts on that, if they feel inclined to share.
47 GeoffWard (#) May 15th, 2011 - 11:43 am Report abuse
The USA (Wikileaks) believes that Venezuela's entry to Mercosur is 'back-corridor blocking' using Paraguay's 'disturbed' political position as the tactic.

I think that it is just Paraguay's 'disturbed' political position.

When Pa. arrive at a voting majority the block will disappear, and Dilma Rousseff will be in charge of the welcome celebrations.

This displeases me,
as I view one side of schizophrenic Dilma's personality as being much more valuable to Brasil, Mercosur, Unasur and the world than the other personality trait:
her pragmatic admin. capability and personal 'power' could lead Brasil to great places *if* her left wing dogma (fed by Chavez, etc) is subsumed during her terms in office.
I fear her health will fail her and Brasil will dissolve into left-dominated coalitions of the extreme (even more) corrupt kind.

Wrt Venezuela:
It is a high GDP country that has a spectacularly failed economic model - arguably worse than its lower GDP neighbours.
It *should* be a nett contributor to the advancement of poorer surrounding SA states; instead it is a prime basket-case, unable to feed adequately its own people.

Should it stay isolated and away from the trading blocs?
Yes.
It is, atm, a virulent virus able to contaminate and destroy, in the embryo, the best and latest chance of SA (Mercosur) economic co-operations. This destruction may happen in any case through internal collapse, but this is no reason to make certain such a collapse.

The Chavez economic model (if that is what it is ) is 'immiscible' with the trade models of Chile and Brasil and everything in between; it would act like a scum on water or a sediment in a wine - ie. better off not there at all.
48 ElaineB (#) May 15th, 2011 - 12:35 pm Report abuse
Let us hope Paraguay holds out as long as possible.

Perhaps Chavez should have invested some of the $5billion he spent buying Argentine bonds on his own country. He seems to buy favours to futher his own power. Maybe he sees himself as the President of South America in his dreams. : )

I happened to be in Argentina a couple of years ago when they were hosting the Mercosur summit in Tucuman. I was in Mendoza, I think, and was watching the coverage on TV. I was surprised at how much attention the Argentine media gave to Chavez over other leaders.

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