Country & Regional Focus
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Latin America: Seizing the Opportunities

by Juan Pablo Cuevas, Head of Global Transaction Services, Latin America and the Caribbean, Bank of America Merrill Lynch

To outside companies looking to expand internationally, Latin America is a land of opportunity. In many of the region’s countries, democratic governments are currently entering their second, third or fourth elections — while Chile recently held its first ever presidential primary election. Despite the recent rioting in Brazil, by and large the political instability that was once inherent in the region has given way to longer-term governments and longer-term planning as the region’s economies continue to grow.

That said, Latin America, much like the rest of the world, continues to go through a process of adjustments and changes following the unprecedented financial crisis. The region is not immune to events in other regions, such as the economic downturn in Europe and the gradual slowdown in China. Nevertheless, the impact of these factors is generally quite limited. For example, the interdependence between Latin America and Asia is still significant, but not to the point where a slowdown in China would have a major impact on the region.

For companies considering a move into Latin America, and for those looking to operate more efficiently within the region, there are plenty of opportunities available. From shared service centres to stock exchange integration, this supplement takes a detailed look at the opportunities, challenges and variations that companies may encounter when doing business in Latin America.