Aviso LatAm: COVID-19 January 29, 2022

​​​​​What you should know

  • Around two-thirds: The share of Latin America and the Caribbean’s (LAC) inhabitants who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
  • Davos Agenda 2022: Increasing COVID-19 vaccination rates, swift economic recovery, and integrating climate action in public policies were among the key priorities outlined for the region at the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) annual meeting.
  • #ProactiveLAC: Unlocking the potential of small and medium-sized enterprises is critical to the region’s economic reactivation and long-term prosperity. Tune in to our virtual event on Wednesday, February 2 at 2:00 p.m. ET, featuring Vice President of Dominican Republic Raquel Peña, Coca-Cola Latin America President Henrique Braun, Development Bank for Latin America’s Vice President of Sustainable Development Julián Suárez, and more.

Vaccination by the numbers

Percentage of population with booster shot: Chile (65) #1 worldwide, Uruguay (51) #12 worldwide, Cuba (43) #23 worldwide, Argentina (25) #43 worldwide, Peru (21) #49 worldwide, Brazil (20) #50 worldwide, Panama (20) #52 worldwide, El Salvador (19) #55 worldwide, Dominican Republic (16) #57 worldwide, Ecuador (13) #61 worldwide, Paraguay (11) #62 worldwide. Source: nytimes.com

Percentage of population fully vaccinated: Chile (89) #4 worldwide, Cuba (86) #7 worldwide, Uruguay (78) #21 worldwide, Argentina (76) #24 worldwide, Ecuador (76) #26 worldwide, Costa Rica (72) #39 worldwide, Brazil (71) #43 worldwide, Peru (69) #45 worldwide, El Salvador (65) #56 worldwide, Colombia (61) #70 worldwide. Source: nytimes.com

Vaccinations per capita (vaccines administered per 100 people): Cuba (298) #1 worldwide, Chile (244) #2 worldwide, Uruguay (212) #11 worldwide, Argentina (190) #30 worldwide, Ecuador (170) #40 worldwide, Brazil (169) #42 worldwide, Peru (168) #44 worldwide, Costa Rica (163) #47 worldwide, El Salvador (154) #59 worldwide, Panama (152) #61 worldwide, Colombia (139) #68 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

  • 2 million: The number of vaccine doses Chile agreed to purchase from Moderna. Chile has begun offering a second booster shot despite already boasting one of the world’s highest COVID-19 vaccination rates.
  • Omicron: Since January 14, ten countries in South America have reported record-high cases as the variant continues to strain health systems.
  • Bolivia: Public hospitals are operating at 50-70 percent capacity due to high infeciton rates among health personnel.
  • Carnival: Rio de Janeiro postponed the world-famous festivities to late April as the number of coronavirus cases in Brazil continues to rise.
  • Caribbean: Nearly 15 countries and territories were added to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s highest travel risk category due to the ongoing surge in COVID-19 cases.
  • Argentina: On January 24, President Alberto Fernandez launched a National Vaccination Campaign against COVID-19 to ensure a full and safe return to in-person classes.
  • Paraguay: President Mario Abdo Benitez is the latest regional leader to contract COVID-19 amid the spread of the omicron variant.

Economies in focus

Economic Impact

  • In 2022, Brazil’s economy is projected to grow at only 0.9 percent, the slowest rate in the region, according to analysts from Focus Economics. 
  • Bloomberg Economics and several regional banks estimate that Mexico entered a technical recession, putting a halt to a brief recovery from the pandemic. 
  • On January 25, the International Monetary Fund warned that Argentina is at risk of high inflation “becoming entrenched.” It is expected to reach 54.8 percent at the end of 2022. 

Economic Recovery

  • According to the Association for Private Capital Investments in Latin America, startup funding tripled from 2019 to a record $15 billion in 2021 as venture capitalists look to invest in emerging markets.
  • Following growth in 2021, Peru’s finance minister said he expects the nation’s economy to grow between 3.5 and 4.0 percent.
  • In 2022, the World Bank expects the Guyanese economy to expand by 49.7 percent, the largest in the Caribbean. 
  • To stave off regional inflation, Uruguay’s Central Bank raised its benchmark interest rate 75 basis points in January with plans to return to neutral rates early in the second quarter. 

Social transformations: Bringing Silicon Valley to Latin America and the Caribbean

  • According to the open finance platform Belvo, Latin America is one of the most fertile regions for fintech innovation. 
  • Investment received by the fintech sector in Latin America jumped from $3.1 billion in 2020 to more than $9.7 billion in the first three quarters of 2021.
  • Brazil, Mexico, and Colombia are already working on their open banking regulation with results expected throughout 2022.