Latin America and the Caribbean

Argentina – CIPE Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean John Zemko participated in a meeting of provincial business leaders from 11 provinces in Argentina to discuss strategies for reaching consensus on important economic reform issues. Approximately 40 people attended the event, which was organized by CIPE partner Fundación Libertad as part of CIPE’s and Fundación Libertad’s efforts to foster the private sector’s active role in improving democratic dialogue with the government on the development agenda for Argentina.

Bolivia - Fundación Milenio released a Weekly Economic Bulletin analyzing the economic performance of state-owned companies in Bolivia. The Weekly Economic Bulletins examine select topics related to the Bolivian economy in an effort to make this information more accessible to academics, policy consultants, journalists, and the general public. They are available for download in Spanish on Milenio’s website.

Bolivia – Milenio released a Weekly Economic Bulletin analyzing the double Christmas bonus and the negative effect that it would have on Bolivia’s economy. The Weekly Economic Bulletins examine topics related to the Bolivian economy in an effort to make this information more accessible to academics, policy consultants, journalists, and the general public. They are available for download in Spanish on Milenio’s website. Milenio’s analysis of the double Christmas bonus was also featured in the newspaper Bolivia Today on December 9, and can be read in Spanish on Bolivia Today’s website.

Bolivia – Fundación Milenio presented a book developed in association with the Pazos Kanki Foundation titled Bolivia: At the Crossroads of the 21st Century. The book is a collection of several research papers analyzing the country’s political and economic situation, and also contains recommendations for improvements in policymaking. The book was presented by former Central Bank President Juan Antonio Morales at the Vienna Auditorium at La Paz, and 120 people, including academics and policy consultants, attended the event.

Ecuador – Marco Morales, Karina Salazar, Tania Carbay, and José Romero, participants in the 2014 edition of the Ecuadorian Institute of Political Economy’s (IEEP) “Ecuadorian Entrepreneurs” Program, held a workshop at the Polytechnic School of Chimborazo in the city of Riobamba. The students, who were joined by Roberto Villacreses of IEEP, discussed entrepreneurship, democracy, and free enterprise with university students from the region. The workshops are an important component of the “Ecuadorian Entrepreneurs” Program, which teaches a select group of university students about democracy, free market economics, and entrepreneurship, and gives these students the skills and motivation to create positive economic growth through their own initiatives.

Ecuador– Andrea Villacreses, a participant in the 2014 edition of the Ecuadorian Institute of Political Economy’s (IEEP) “Ecuadorian Entrepreneurs” program, held a workshop at the Technical University of Manabí in the city of Portoviejo. Villacreses discussed leadership and entrepreneurship with approximately 50 university students from the region. The workshops are an important component of the “Ecuadorian Entrepreneurs” Program, which teaches a select group of university students about democracy, free market economics, and entrepreneurship, and gives these students the skills and motivation to create positive economic growth through their own initiatives.

Nicaragua - The Network of Nicaraguan Businesswomen (REN) held the first meeting of the Access to Credit Working Group in Managua. Sixteen women entrepreneurs, three delegates from various think tanks, and seven delegates from microfinance institutions and banks attended the meeting to discuss and propose measures to improve access to credit for women entrepreneurs. The Access to Credit Working Group is an important component of CIPE and REN’s efforts to strengthen the capacity of female entrepreneurs and businesswomen’s organizations to identify and advocate for policies that improve women’s economic and democratic participation in society.

Nicaragua – Ruth Cuadra, a participant in the Network of Nicaraguan Businesswomen’s (REN) Leadership and Advocacy “Training of Trainers” program in November, replicated portions of the program for 17 mentors and mentees who are currently participating in REN’s and CIPE Global’s mentorship program. During the workshop, Ruth discussed the importance of assertive communication and leadership. This capacity building exercise will help women entrepreneurs present a National Businesswomen’s Agenda to public officials, the private sector, and other key civil society actors. Through the replica workshops REN is also identifying potential women business leaders that it can then help groom into leadership positions at local and regional chambers or associations, company boards, etc.

Peru– Instituto Invertir announced the selection of the 130 students who will participate in the EmprendeAhora 2015 Program. The students represent 24 different regions of Peru and were selected from among 4,609 applicants. The EmprendeAhora Program seeks to promote entrepreneurship and leadership skills among Peruvian youth in an effort to strengthen economic development in Peru.

Venezuela - Alicia Sepúlveda, Thomás Chacón, and Oscar Torrealba from the Center for the Dissemination of Economic Knowledge (CEDICE) were featured in an article in the eastern Venezuela edition of the newspaper The People’s Paper. In the article, the three researchers discussed how Venezuela’s constitution is being displaced in favor of the Maduro’s government political agenda (known as the “Plan for the Fatherland”). The People’s Paper is disseminated in the states of Sucre, Anzoátegui, Monagas, Nueva Esparta, and Delta Amacuro.

Venezuela - CEDICE held a forum discussion titled “The Index of Economic Freedom and its Ties to Human Progress: Is Venezuela Moving Forward, or Falling Behind?” Juan Carlos Hidalgo, an expert in Latin American public policy from the Cato Institute, spoke to an audience that included academics, leaders from the private sector, and journalists about economic freedom in Venezuela.

Venezuela - CEDICE published a Cost-Benefit Analysis that examines the Enabling Law, which permits the president to rule by decree on economic and security issues. The Cost-Benefit Analyses investigate the effects of legislation approved in Venezuela’s National Assembly and are available for download in Spanish on CEDICE’s website. CEDICE also released two Weekly Economic Bulletins explaining the ramifications of the Enabling Law for Venezuela’s economy. The Weekly Economic Bulletins examine timely economic topics relevant to Venezuela and can be downloaded in Spanish on CEDICE’s website.

Venezuela – The Center for the Dissemination of Economic Knowledge (CEDICE) published five Weekly Legislative Bulletins. The five bulletins examine different aspects of the Enabling Law, which gives the president wide powers to rule by decree on security and economic issues. The Weekly Legislative Bulletins examine laws that have been passed in the National Assembly as well as legislation that is under review and can be downloaded in Spanish on CEDICE’s website.

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