From the Heart of South America to the World

|   By Miguel Benítez   |
Little by little, Paraguay is pulling back its veil of mystery, enacting open-door polices that are attracting large international companies of all kinds, as well as a myriad of foreign investors.
In just two years, Paraguay’s government has issued sovereign bonds for $1.78 billion, mainly to stimulate needed infrastructure development, while developing a legal framework for new financial policies with its Law of Public-Private Alliances (APP) and Law 5.074.
“In 2014 annual public investment by the Ministry of Public Works (MOPC) increased to $426 million, and in 2015 we want to raise it to above 600 million,” Ramón Jiménez Gaona, public works minister, told Latin Trade. He noted that under previous governments, investment was less than $200 million per year.
Still, critics question delays by the current administration in executing the budget, pointing out that so far this year it has only spent 31 percent of available funds.
There are $680 million of highway projects earmarked for 2016, and “our goal is to be above $1 billion (completed) by the end of President Horacio Cartes’s term,” said Jiménez Gaona.
He said his ministry is managing an aggressive 20-year master plan of infrastructure, transportation and logistics projects. Total investment will call for $16 billion in public works, and of this amount $7 billion will be scheduled up to 2018. Tenders will be called in sectors like roads, water and sanitation, as well as electricity …

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