Latin America and the Caribbean enter 2023 with preexisting challenges worsened by a global growth slowdown, tightened international financial conditions, and a contentious geopolitical landscape. Democracy continues to be threatened across the region due to increased polarization and weakened institutions, exemplified by the January 8 attacks on Brazilian democratic institutions. Elections in Argentina, Paraguay, and Guatemala will test recent trends of anti-incumbent voting and democratic regression. On the economic front, S&P Global predicts that the high inflation experienced in 2022 will recede below 10% in 2023, although the IMF predicts lower overall growth rates for the region, falling from 3.5% in 2022 to 1.7% in 2023.
What political, economic, and social challenges and opportunities lie ahead for Latin America and the Caribbean in the coming year? What will the financial implications of these challenges be? The Georgetown Americas Institute (GAI) hosted a panel discussion on the 2023 regional forecast featuring Monica de Bolle, senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics; Michael Shifter, adjunct professor at the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies at Georgetown University; Shantall Tegho, a managing director at Goldman Sachs; and Alejandro Werner, GAI founding director.
Monica de Bolle has been a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics since January 2017 and is former director for Latin American studies and emerging markets at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University. She focuses on macroeconomics, foreign exchange policy, monetary and fiscal policy, trade and inequality, financial regulation, and capital markets. During the COVID-19 pandemic, she has also expanded into public health research and specialized in immunology, genetics, and biochemistry at Harvard Medical School. De Bolle is currently pursuing an advanced graduate degree in infectious diseases and human immunology at Georgetown University. De Bolle has authored and coauthored a number of books on the global economy and Brazil's policy challenges including How to Kill the Blue Butterfly: A Chronicle of the Dilma Era (2016), The State of the World Economy, Challenges and Responses: Essays in Honor of Pedro S. Malan (2014), The Future of Brazilian Manufacturing: The Deindustrialization Debate (2013), and New Dilemmas in Economic Policy (2011). De Bolle obtained her B.A. in economics from the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro and holds a Ph.D. in economics from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Michael Shifter is an adjunct professor at the Center for Latin American Studies at Georgetown University and former president of the Inter-American Dialogue. Shifter held senior positions at the Dialogue for nearly three decades and served 12 years as president; he currently serves as senior fellow at the organization. Prior to joining the Inter-American Dialogue, Shifter directed the Latin American and Caribbean program at the National Endowment for Democracy and, before that, the Ford Foundation’s governance and human rights program in the Andean region and Southern Cone. In the 1980s, he was a representative in Brazil with the Inter-American Foundation and worked at the Woodrow Wilson Center’s Latin American Program. Shifter graduated Phi Beta Kappa and summa cum laude from Oberlin College and holds a M.A. in sociology from Harvard University, where he taught Latin American development and politics for four years.
Shantall Tegho is a managing director at Goldman Sachs. She is a senior member of the Investment Strategy Group's tactical asset allocation team, focused on identifying investment opportunities in emerging market fixed income securities and emerging market currencies. Prior to joining Goldman Sachs, Tegho spent more than a decade in various emerging market-related research and investing positions, most recently overseeing sovereign debt research and strategy at Glen Point Capital. She previously worked at Blackstone NWI Asset Management (BNAM) as head of Sovereign Debt Research and at the Central Bank of Mexico as a portfolio manager for the foreign exchange and precious metals desk.
Alejandro Werner is the founding director of the Georgetown Americas Institute and a non-resident senior fellow at the Peterson Institute. He recently completed almost nine years as director of the Western Hemisphere Department at the International Monetary Fund. Prior to that appointment, he was undersecretary of finance and public credit in Mexico’s Finance Ministry and held several positions in that ministry and the Central Bank. He also taught at leading universities in Mexico, Spain, and the United States. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a B.A. in economics from ITAM.