Chile remains the star of Latin America when it comes to business climate, but it also faces several growing challenges.
BY CHRONICLE STAFF
Ricardo Alvial, Chief Investment & Risks Officer for Chile-based Enersis, is optimistic about his countrys ability to continue attracting local and foreign investments due to its stable macro economic and political climate. However, he also warns against complacency.
"The main challenge for Chile would be to maintain its leadership condition as the best place to do business in the region," he says.
Case in point: While Chile topped the third annual Latin Business Index from Latin Business Chronicle - published last week - its score barely beat number two, Panama. (See Latin Business: Best & Worst). The index of 19 countries looks at five key categories and 27 subcategories to measure the recent, current and future business environment in a country, including macro, corporate and political environment, globalization/competitiveness and technology level.
"We should consider that some other Latin American countries have internalized the importance of giving proper incentives and conditions to stimulate foreign investments," Alviar points out. "This new scenario has created a more competitive environment and Chile must develop new and more aggressive policies to continue to be the more attractive place."
In the meantime, Chile is widely considered the best place to do business in Latin America. Last week, for example, it also topped the 2008 World Competitiveness Yearbook from the Swiss business school IMD. Its economy is more competitive than that of countries like the Czech Republic, Korea and Spain, according to the IMD survey of 55 countries worldwide.
"As confirmed by many international polls and studies, Chile is one the best...
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