Economic Survey of Latin America and the Caribbean 2008-2009

Policies for Creating Quality Jobs

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This publication comes at a critical point in the economic development of the Latin American and Caribbean region. A growth phase that the region's recent history cannot equal in nature and duration has come to an end and output is contracting. The first part of this edition looks at the channels through which the crisis is affecting the economies of the region and its impact on variables such as economic growth, employment and external-sector indicators. It also discusses the strengths and weaknesses of the countries and concludes with a discussion of the outlook for the second half of the year. The second part discusses policies for creating quality jobs, including challenges and opportunities for labor institutions and labor markets, labor-market policies for youth and women. This CD-ROM also contains the electronic versions of the printed publication. The statistical information reflects data available up to 30 June 2009.




The Cuban economy grew by 4.3% in 2008, down from 7.3% the previous year. For the third consecutive year, per capita GDP rose at the same rate as overall GDP, reflecting zero demographic growth. The consumer price index was practically unchanged, falling by 0.1 of a percentage point, while unemployment contracted from 1.8% in 2007 to 1.6% in 2008. By contrast, both the fiscal deficit and the external deficit worsened. The fiscal deficit rose from 3.2% of GDP in 2007 to 6.7% in 2008. In the same period, the balanceof-payments current account went from a small surplus to a deficit equivalent to several percentage points of GDP.


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