Western Hemisphere > Honduras

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International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
The Honduran economy has shown remarkable resilience to various domestic and external shocks over 2020-22, and real GDP is now around 6 percent above pre-pandemic levels supported by the authorities’ prudent policies. That said, Honduras faces long-standing social and structural challenges that hinder its development potential and stability. Under the previous Fund-supported program that expired in January 2022, Honduras succeeded in enhancing the quality of fiscal policy and implementing institutional reforms. The current authorities are committed to maintaining prudent macroeconomic policies and advancing structural reforms while fostering inclusive growth by creating space for critical social spending and infrastructure investment. In this context, the authorities have requested a new Fund arrangement to anchor their economic and institutional reform agenda.
Mr. Alberto Behar
We develop a model of endogenous skill-biased technical change in developing countries. The endogenous response to a rise in skill supply counters the traditional substitution effect and dampens its role in reducing wage inequality. The model re-enforces consensus estimates of the elasticity of substitution between more/less educated workers by reconciling dispersed existing estimates. It also rationalizes estimates that were hitherto deemed implausible or model-inconsistent. We produce new estimates for developing countries with a novel global panel (finding values at or just above 2) and with Latin American data that facilitates analysis of dynamics (which reduce estimates to 1.7-1.8). We therefore shed new light on a parameter that is crucial for inequality, growth, and other key macroeconomic questions.
Ms. Alina Carare, Catherine Koh, and Mr. Yorbol Yakhshilikov
Undocumented migration from the Northern Triangle countries (El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras) to the United States has been steadily increasing over the past 30 years, accelerating at times. The paper investigates what factors could explain this fact, by estimating an investment decision model, using annual data over 1990-2019. Economic labor market conditions (real wages and unemployment rates, especially in the U.S.) play a major role in explaining undocumented migration. Less explored drivers of undocumented migration tied to living conditions at home also explain well undocumented migration (natural disasters, coffee production, higher temperatures, and homicide rates). Tighter border enforcement measures act as a deterrent, and perceptions regarding changes of these measures could also drive up undocumented migration at times. Policies that address the root causes of migration at home, including with the U.S. help, are essential in reducing the difference between perceived benefits and expected costs of migration.