Remittances, or the money sent by migrants to their home countries, have always played a crucial role in the economies of Latin America and the Caribbean. That became particularly clear during the COVID-19 pandemic, with much of the region’s economies on life support in mid- to late 2020. Against this backdrop, remittances acted as an automatic stabilizer, supporting local … [Read more...] about Digital Finance and Pandemic Remittances
From the issuing of ID cards and permits, to the dispensing of subsidies and the collection of taxes, Latin American and Caribbean governments manage between five and 20 transactional services per person each year. These services are often slow and cumbersome, requiring citizens to make multiple trips to government offices and using up large amounts of their time. As a result, … [Read more...] about How Digital Technology Can Deliver Government Services More Cost Effectively
Over the last decade, Latin America and the Caribbean has become increasingly digitalized, with the spread of internet use to roughly three-quarters of the population, a rapid proliferation of smartphones, and the emergence of numerous new digital companies worth over a billion dollars in areas such as commerce and finance. This digital revolution has had visible impacts on … [Read more...] about Digitalizing Public Services to Improve Lives in Latin America and the Caribbean
Remittances – money sent from migrants working abroad to families in their home countries – are a major source of income for many in Latin American and the Caribbean, representing as much as 20% of the GDP in nations such as El Salvador, Honduras, Haiti, and Jamaica. As occurred after the 2008 global financial crisis, remittances typically dry up in the wake of economic … [Read more...] about Why Remittances Soared as the Pandemic Raged
For decades economists have warned that low levels of public investment in education, health, infrastructure, and security would weaken a country’s economic growth and delay its social development. Unfortunately, that describes many Latin American and Caribbean countries. From 1980 to 2016, public investment in the region grew by almost 10 percentage points slower than in … [Read more...] about Why Don’t Voters Demand More Public Investment?