The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) projected that the country’s current account closed 2012 with a deficit of 2,383 million, representing 5.3% of gross domestic product (GDP), similar to that achieved in 2011.
According to ECLAC, this is the result of an increase of 322 million in the projected deficit in the merchandise trade balance plus an increase of $451 million in the projected deficit in the income balance. Both exports and imports increased by a similar percentage over the previous year (6.1% in both cases).
The increase in the projected deficit in the income balance is primarily due to increased capital outflows by sharing profits and dividends, which would total $954 million 2012 year end, an increase of $470 million compared previous year. The increase in the deficit of these two items is partially offset by an expected increase of $576 million in the balance of services.
ECLAC estimated that foreign direct investment in 2012 closing at a level of 2.200 million, slightly higher than the previous year, thus contributing greatly to continue to finance the current account deficit.
The unemployment rate remained virtually the same (between 2011 and 2012 increased from 7.7% to 7.8%), with a slight drop in the employment rate. Moreover, the employment (salaried contributors to the Costa Rican Social Security) continued to grow at rates above 3%, and average real wages increased slightly in real terms (1.5%).
Data Source: The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC)
The Costa Rica News (TCRN)
San Jose Costa Rica