Brazil and Mexico, Latin American countries that invest more abroad

Brazil and Mexico were the Latin American countries that invested most abroad in 2018, according to the Global Latam report presented this Thursday, which places Peru and Guatemala as two of the least in the same period.

According to the second edition of this study conducted by the Institute of Foreign Trade of Spain Export and Investment (ICEX) and the Ibero-American General Secretariat (SEGIB), the total amount of the region amounts to 38,225 million dollars, a "slightly lower" amount to the one registered in 2017.

This "slight" decline is framed in a global context of fall, with a 13% year-on-year decrease in global flows of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in 2018, mainly affected by US fiscal policies, according to data from the Agency of the United Nations for Trade and Development (Unctad).

The CEO of ICEX, María Peña, highlighted the importance of Latin America for Spain and was satisfied by the effort that the country makes in that regard.

For his part, the head of Economy and Business of the Ibero-American General Secretariat, Pablo Hardy, recalled that Latin America "has always seen trade as a way of development" and welcomed the commercial relations of the region with Spain continue to generate "ties" .


Brazil consolidated itself as the largest investor in the region abroad with an accumulated of 377,584 million dollars and 14,695 million in 2018, while Mexico allocated 10,704 million dollars, "a notable increase" after the "excessive indebtedness" of the large Mexican companies in recent years.

Behind these two large economies was Colombia, with 5,122 million dollars in FDI, "one of the highest levels ever reached," says the report, which indicates that Uruguay's figures (2,280 million) "are conditioned by the flows financials of foreign companies. "

The study highlights that Chile "greatly" reduced its investments abroad "in the last three years" to "reach only 1,949 million dollars in 2018" and that Argentina reached "one of the largest amounts ever recorded", with 1,802 million dollars, despite suffering "a strong recession accompanied by currency instability".

Direct investments from Central America "increased continuously in recent years," the text states, specifying that in 2018 the amount reached $ 1,683 million, with Panama in the lead with 811 million; Costa Rica, with 581; Guatemala, with 211, and Honduras, with 80.

Along the same lines, the report recalls that several Central American and Caribbean economies "do not yet report official data" of FDI, among which is the Dominican Republic, "which has been the fastest growing in recent years, together with Panama. region of".

Finally, Peru closes the list of Latin American FDI, with 19 million, after "experiencing a rise in the last decade."

Likewise, the figures for Venezuela are not specified in the report, which indicates that "the economic crisis has dragged companies that invest abroad."


The report also collects data on intra-regional investment, which "has not changed much over the past decade" and remains "at 60% of the investments announced."

Within the remaining 40%, the United States is the preferred destination for investments in the region, especially by Mexican and Brazilian companies, and in the European Union, Spain continues to receive the largest amount of investments, followed by the United Kingdom and Portugal.

In that sense, the text highlights "the low presence of Latin American multinationals in Asia, especially in China, mainly because the largest multinationals in Latin America are in sectors such as the exploitation of natural resources, heavy industries and services, in which China barely receive FDI. "


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