The Report on Foreign Investment in Latin America and the Caribbean, 2004, prepared by the Economic Commission on Latin America (ECLA) and presented yesterday March 16 at a seminar in Brazil’s National Economic and Social Development Bank (BNDES), emphasizes that there was a significant renewal of foreign investments in Brazil in 2004, and the tendency is one of growth.
The influx of over US$ 18 billion, 40% more than in the previous year and basically in the service sector, corresponds to the first positive result in this decade, which began with an investment retreat following the explosion in foreign resources obtained through the privatizations effectuated during the 1996-2000 period.
This year’s edition of the ECLA report analyzes Brazil and the energy sector in the Southern Cone. The trend towards the integration of South American markets, through both the initiatives of private enterprise and governmental actions, was confirmed.
The main challenges identified in the document as facing the Brazilian government are the consolidation of institutional reforms to attract more foreign investors and, consequently, an increase in their contribution to the development of production in the country.
According to the director of ECLA’s Productive and Entrepreneurial Development Unit, João Carlos Ferraz, definitions are needed in the areas of regulating competition, industrial policy, technology, and environment.
“Actions of this sort will improve the quality of the investments made in the country and assure the qualification of the jobs that are created,” he added.
Translation: David Silberstein