Latin America, Caribbean economies poised for worst crisis in decades amid pandemic: U.N. agency

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The economies of Latin America and the Caribbean will contract by a record 5.3% in 2020 as the coronavirus outbreak ravages the region, unleashing the worst social and economic crisis in decades, according to a United Nations agency report on Tuesday.

The crisis will hit hardest in South America, a region especially dependent on exports to China and impacted by plummeting commodity prices, the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean said in the report.

Mexico will also be hard hit, with a contraction of 6.5% this year, according to the report.

“The crisis in the region in 2020…will be the worst in its entire history,” the agency said. “To find a contraction of comparable magnitude, you need to go back to the Great Depression of 1930 (-5%) or even more to 1914 (-4.9%).”
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