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Colombia’s view of Brazil’s stimulus package?

Want to know what the neighbours might think of Brazil’s latest $66 billion economic stimulus package?

In an interview last Friday (10 August) the Colombian Minister of Finance, Juan Carlos Echeverry (full article will be published in Euromoney’s September issue), said:

“I don’t believe in packages. When you hear about an economic policy ‘package’ it’s because the country has been ten years without doing anything. [What do I think if I hear that a] country has a package? The translation is it hasn’t been reforming for the past ten years. I don’t believe in packages. I believe reforming has to be a way of life.

“Colombia has had 14 years of consistent economic policy. Since 1998 we have had almost the same team and we have completed 14 years of consistent reform in every aspect you can mention: housing, health care, royalties, oil regulation. And we keep reforming so that when you get to this moment, today, when you have a crisis you have reduced your vulnerability.

“My philosophy is continual reform and micro-management. We get revenues and save. We get revenues and save. There’s nothing more to it.”

Of course, Minister Echeverry wasn’t talking about specifically about Brazil, he was talking generally, and before President Rousseff announced Brazil’s latest package.

Still, makes for an interesting commentary.

This article was originally published on Rob Dwyer’s blog.