The official forecast for Latin America is glum. The COVID-19 pandemic has triggered a regional recession, dragged down social indicators, and killed hundreds of thousands of citizens. The United Nations predicts 9.1% negative growth in 2020 and 231 million Latin Americans in poverty – a 15-year backslide. Widespread discontent has led to mass protests and political unrest. Democratic erosions, from populism to authoritarianism, are on the rise in countries like Brazil, Peru, El Salvador, and Mexico – as regimes in Venezuela, Cuba, and Nicaragua clamp down. Can Latin America rebound amid so many challenges? Ricardo Ernst, the Baratta Chair in Global Business and co-director of the Global Logistics Research program at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, makes the case for optimism. He argues that a shift in how the region approaches issues like productivity, public policy, and politics will bring a brighter future. Ernst is also the managing director of Georgetown’s Global Business Initiative and the Latin American Board, as well as executive director of the Latin America Leadership Program.
Produced by Simpler Media