Paraguay’s central bank increased the country’s growth estimate for 2013 from 13% to 13.6%, the highest for Latinamerica. Estimates have been on the increase since October last year, 9.5%; December, 10.5%; April 13% and now, 13.6% which compares to the 0.9% contraction of 2012, when drought and Foot and Mouth Disease hit Paraguay’s main export items, soybeans and beef.
A controversial bill imposing a 10% tax on grains and oil seeds exported in their natural state was finally approved by the Paraguayan congress. The bill presented in 2012 was passed in the Senate, rejected in the Lower House and again ratified by the Upper House, however Deputies could not round up the necessary 53 votes to again reject it.
Venezuela and Paraguay need to re-establish full relations and overcome “all the obstacles that need to be overcome”, said Foreign minister Elías Jaua currently in Asunción, a special guest of his counterpart Eladio Loizaga.
Venezuela Foreign minister Elias Jaua is expected Wednesday in Asuncion, a guest of the Paraguayan government to talk about bilateral relations, Mercosur and to advance in negotiations of common interest, according to sources from the administration of President Horacio Cartes.
The UK is back in full force in Latinamerica, and particularly in Paraguay, the fastest growing economy in the region, said Foreign Office minister Hugo Swire during the inauguration of the British embassy in Asunción, which had been shut down back in 2005.
Brazil offered Paraguay the rotating chair of Mercosur as of next December, as part of an overall understanding to have the landlocked country return to the block, while accepting the incorporation of Venezuela as a full member of the group. Paraguay rejects Venezuela’s membership alleging it was done against the will of its Senate and in breach of national and international law and of the Mercosur charter.
Foreign Office Minister Hugo Swire formally opened on Wednesday the British Embassy in Asuncion, Paraguay which will be headed by Ambassador Jeremy Hobbs. Accompanied by Paraguayan Foreign Minister Eladio Loizaga, he hailed the opening a symbol of the UK’s continued engagement in Latin America.
Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff received her peer from Paraguay, Horacio Cartes with full head of state honours but at the same time reminded him that Paraguay is a full member of Mercosur and “bilateral relations are in the context of multilateral relations with all countries of the hemisphere”.
The British embassy in Paraguay which was remained closed since 2005 will be reopened this week according to Paraguayan foreign minister Eladio Loizaga. The news was confirmed following a meeting of the Paraguayan official with Foreign Secretary William Hague.
Paraguay’s GDP expanded 13.3% in the second quarter of this year boosted by agriculture and beef exports, according to the latest release from the Central bank. Agriculture has proved the most dynamic sector with 6.2% growth helping Paraguay to have the fastest growing economy this year in Latam following on a 0.9% retraction last year, because of an extended drought.