Aviso LatAm: COVID-19 February 25, 2022

​​​​​What you should know

  • 100 million: The milestone number of COVID-19 vaccine doses delivered by the Pan-American Health Organization through COVAX to Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC).
  • Cases: COVID-19 infections in the Americas declined by 31 percent last week, an encouraging trend tempered by a 5.6 percent rise in deaths.
  • ICYMI: A new report, featuring key regional insights from Brazil, Central America, Mexico, and Trinidad and Tobago details how US and Chinese vaccine diplomacy in LAC fared during the pandemic.

Vaccination by the numbers

Percentage of population with booster shot: Chile (71) #1 worldwide, Uruguay (55) #17 worldwide, Cuba (51) #20 worldwide, Argentina (36) #41 worldwide, Brazil (29) #52 worldwide, Peru (28) #53 worldwide, Panama (26) #59 worldwide, El Salvador (21) #64 worldwide, Dominican Republic (20) #65 worldwide, Ecuador (20) #66 worldwide, Colombia (15) #68 worldwide. Source: nytimes.com

Percentage of population fully vaccinated: Chile (90) #5 worldwide, Cuba (87) #7 worldwide, Argentina (80) #21 worldwide, Uruguay (78) #26 worldwide, Ecuador (78) #28 worldwide, Costa Rica (74) #36 worldwide, Brazil (73) #42 worldwide, Peru (71) #44 worldwide, Colombia (66) #59 worldwide, El Salvador (66) #60 worldwide. Source: nytimes.com

Vaccinations per capita (vaccines administered per 100 people): Cuba (307) #1 worldwide, Chile (252) #2 worldwide, Uruguay (219) #14 worldwide, Argentina (205) #27 worldwide, Brazil (183) #39 worldwide, Ecuador (179) #41 worldwide, Peru (177) #43 worldwide, Costa Rica (170) #50 worldwide, Panama (161) #58 worldwide, El Salvador (157) #62 worldwide, Colombia (151) #64 worldwide. Source: nytimes.com

Geopolitics of vaccine donations: US vs. China

  • The United States outpaces China in its donations of COVID-19 vaccines to Latin America and the Caribbean, with Colombia and Mexico topping the list. The region has received roughly 52 percent of all US COVID-19 vaccine donations. To learn more, visit our COVID-19 vaccine tracker: Latin America and the Caribbean.

Health + Innovation

  • Paraguay: The second country in the world to grant emergency use authorization to the Taiwanese-manufactured Medigen vaccine.
  • Moderna: In a bid to expand vaccine reach in LAC, the lab announced a distribution deal with Adium, an Uruguayan pharmaceutical company.
  • 1.5 million: The number of students returning to their classrooms in Paraguay, many of them for the first time since the onset of the pandemic.
  • 14: The number of PAHO member countries that have vaccinated 70 percent or more of their population against COVID-19.
  • Brazil: Life expectancy decreased 4.4 years due to the effects of the second surge of COVID-19, which peaked in April 2021.
  • Panama: 73 percent of public schools will welcome nearly 1 million students to the classroom following two years of remote learning.
  • AstraZeneca: Brazil’s Health Ministry delivered the first batch of COVID-19 vaccines made in-country following a 2021 technology transfer deal with the British-Swedish company.

Economies in focus

Economic Impact

  • Brazil’s consumer prices continue to increase despite aggressive contractionary policies. Further adjustments to control inflation are expected.
  • Mexican annual inflation likely rose in the first half of February after declining during the previous eight weeks, supporting predictions that the country’s central bank will keep increasing rates in line with the US Federal Reserve.

Economic Recovery

  • Colombia’s GDP expanded 10.6 percent in 2021, according to Colombia’s national statistics agency, the highest level of national GDP growth in the last 115 years.
  • Peru’s economy grew 13.3 percent in 2021. However, monthly data points to a deceleration in growth, with a modest 3.4 percent growth in 2022. 
  • The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) expects Mexico to rebound to pre-pandemic growth levels by Q3 of 2022.

Social transformations: Startup companies in Latin America and the Caribbean are fueling the region’s hiring boom

  • Latin America’s unicorns are driving a regional hiring boom as unprecedented investment allows local companies to expand recruiting efforts and hunt for talent outside of their own borders. 
  • Hiring for positions such as software engineer and account executive in Latin America increased by 286 percent in the second half of 2021, more than in any other region in the world.
  • The number of international companies hiring in Latin America grew by 156 percent in the second half of 2021, more than anywhere else worldwide due to the opportunities created by the transition to remote work.