The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean calls for improving the collection and quality of public spending (+photo)

Over the course of three days, attendees discussed topics such as the need to increase resources obtained through taxes and how to utilize them more effectively with the aim of reducing social inequality.

The meeting was opened on May 6 by José Manuel Salazar Zerenache, Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, who warned that low economic growth and high fiscal costs make implementing tax policies in the region more complex.

When countries have to allocate three, four or even five points of GDP to service external debt, the availability of resources to address health, education and infrastructure declines, the official said.

Representatives of the Treasury and Finance Ministries from 13 governments in Latin America and the Caribbean, in addition to experts, leaders of international organizations and academics, participated in the sessions.

The most prominent points were the challenges posed by the phenomenon of climate change today, as well as the characteristics of public spending, its financing methods, and its priorities with the aim of achieving more sustainable development.

During the symposium, ECLAC presented the Latin America and the Caribbean Financial Panorama 2024 report, a tool on how to promote major transformations in the current development model and close gaps in productivity and social and environmental equity.

At the closing ceremony, Daniel Tetelman, Director of the Economic Development Division of this UN mechanism, noted that to improve the collection process, we must first grow, but at the same time make the necessary reforms and improve the fight against evasion and avoidance.

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He also noted the need to focus not only on domestic policy efforts, but also on international tax cooperation.

He said that everything that is currently happening at the global level generates, expands or reduces the space for internal tax measures of each country.

Tetelman also referred to the analysis carried out on contributions to financing popular benefits and their impact on labor markets and the universalization of social protection.

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