The IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde praised Colombia as a member with the capacity to support the multilateral organization with “funds” and “services”, something which in the past was not possible. Lagarde made the comments after meeting with Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos in Bogotá where she underlined the “magnificent moment” of the Andean country’s economy.
Mexican economist Alejandro Werner was named on Tuesday to the position of IMF Director, Western Hemisphere Department. His appointment will become effective early in January 2013. Mr. Werner succeeds Mr. Nicolas Eyzáguirre, who resigned effective July 26, 2012.
Argentine Economy minister Hernan Lorenzino struck back at Colombia’s claim that it has overtaken his country to become South America’s second largest economy behind Brazil.
Colombia’s outgoing Finance minister Juan Carlos Echeverry said on Friday that the country’s GDP overtook Argentina’s thus making Colombia’s economy the second largest of South America and third of Latinamerica, behind Brazil and Mexico.
Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos moved Energy Minister Mauricio Cardenas to head the finance post on Thursday in a surprise move. At the midpoint of his four-year term, Santos asked all 16 ministers to resign, including Finance Minister Juan Carlos Echeverry, and set the stage for a cabinet shuffle aimed at shoring up his slumping approval ratings.
The Economy ministers from Colombia, Uruguay and Peru have been rated as the best in Latin America according to the financial magazine America Economica, a publication from the Chilean company Nanbei which does the annual survey based on interviews with 70 Latin American economists.
The Union of South American nations (Unasur), meeting in Peru Friday the region is well-positioned to withstand a sharper global downturn but want to insulate their economies further from a crisis of confidence they blame on Europe and the United States.
Latin American policy makers should withdraw fiscal and monetary stimulus to prevent their economies from overheating before turning to capital controls to limit foreign currency inflows, said Nicolas Eyzaguirre, the International Monetary Fund Western Hemisphere director.
Colombia’s government and central bank announced new measures to stem a rally in the peso after President Juan Manuel Santos expressed concern its appreciation is hurting exporters and job growth.