Publish in Quoted - Monday, July 25, 2022
“We are watching a potential train crash between the US, Mexico and Canada.” Kenneth Smith Ramos, who was Mexico’s chief USMCA negotiator through 2019, on the new dispute over Mexico's energy policies, as quoted by Bloomberg, July 22, 2022.
"Tough love, rather than sticking plaster, is what Argentina needs. "
Financial times editorial, July 18, 2022, criticizing the IMF for not being tougher on Argentina.
“The choice is between a former guerrilla member and a TikTok populist.”
Viktor Szabo, a money manager at Aberdeen Asset Management in London, on Colombia's presidential elections, as quoted by Bloomberg, June 8, 2022.
“Historically, the U.S. gets in trouble in Latin America when it is absent, negligent, not engaged. Problems fester and grow into crises."
Bernard Aronson, a former assistant secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs and former U.S. special envoy to the Colombian peace process, as quoted by Politico, June 6, 2022.
“Nobody knows how much something costs. Talk to any Argentine of a certain age and they probably can tell you how much something went for in the 1990s, but they don’t remember how much something costs today compared to yesterday.”
Federico Moll, director of economic research at consulting firm EcoLatina in Buenos Aires, as quoted by Bloomberg, May 31, 2022.
"Fico voters and Uribe supporters would vote for a rock before they vote for Petro."
Colombia Risk Analysis founder Sergio Guzman as quoted by Reuters, May 30, 2022.
"It's the start of a relationship which I'm sure will soon end in marriage."
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on US Mogul Elon Musk's visit to Brazil, as quoted by Reuters, May 20, 2022.
"These people don’t have time to be hanging out on the Internet. They are hanging out on the bus.”
Flavio Dino, one of Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva’s campaign managers, on followers of Lula is falling behind President Jair Bolsonaro's followers on social media, as quoted by Bloomberg, May 3, 2022
"This idea is so crazy that I don't even know where to start."
Alberto Bernal, Chief EM and Global Strategist at XP Investments, on Colombian presidential candidate Gustavo Petro's plan to stop new oil exploration and restrict oil exports, as quoted by Latinvex, April 27, 2022
"I believe that yesterday was an act of treason against Mexico committed by a group of legislators who, instead of defending the interests of the people ... became outright defenders of foreign companies."
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Monday slammed opposition lawmakers for voting down his planned constitutional overhaul of the electricity market, as quoted by reuters, April 18, 2022.
“The idea of a long-term experienced executive helming Petrobras, rather than a political ally, seems distant in either a Lula or Bolsonaro presidency.”
Schreiner Parker, the head of Latin America of Rystad Energy, a consultancy, as quoted by Bloomberg, April 5, 2022.
“They’re thieves and corrupt, it must be said clearly,”
Ecuador’s President Guillermo Lasso after the opposition lawmakers refused to vote for an investment bill because he wouldn’t agree to handing out cash or the management of assets like hospitals or power companies in exchange for votes, as quoted by Bloomberg, March 24, 2022.
"His “fourth transformation” project risks being remembered as one that dragged Mexico back to the 1960s rather than propelled it forward into the 21st century."
Editorial in the Financial Times, March 6, 2022, on Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.
"Ok boomers… You have 0 jurisdiction on a sovereign and independent nation. We are not your colony, your back yard or your front yard. Stay out of our internal affairs. Don’t try to control something you can’t control."
Salvadorean President Nayib Bukele asking U.S. senators to stay out of his country's "internal affairs" after they called for an investigation into the economic risks the United States faces due to the Central American country's adoption of bitcoin as legal tender, as quoted by Reuters, February 16, 2022.
"The proposal adopted is barbaric, with clear and obvious legal errors."
Diego Hernández, president of Chile's National Mining Society, on the constituent assembly approving an early stage proposal that could lead to the nationalization of the country's copper industry, as quoted by Reuters, February 1, 2022.
“Don’t shoot the messenger: people abroad like Lula, and don’t like Bolsonaro. It’s a fact. Foreign investors see a chance Brazil improves under Lula.”
Rogerio Xavier, co-founder at hedge fund manager SPX Capital, as quoted by Bloomberg, February 1, 2022.
"Venezuela has deleted 14 zeros off its currency since I was a child; we’ve lost 80 percent of GDP in nine years; many of the dollars sloshing around are narco-revenue."
Vanessa Neumann, CEO of Asymmetrica and former Juan Guaidó-appointed Venezuelan ambassador to the United Kingdom, as quoted by the Inter-American Dialogue's daily Latin America Advisor, January 26, 2022
“How can it be that we are working so harmoniously in one area with the U.S. and at the same time the senators are doing this.”
Mexican Economy Minister Tatiana Clouthier on the planned US tax credit for electric vehicles built in the US, as quoted by Bloomberg, December 3, 2021.
"The brakes are really on new investment because there's a context of uncertainty, which means it's very difficult to invest in the current context."
European Union's ambassador to Mexico Gautier Mignot to reporters, commenting on the Mexican government's plan to overhaul the electricity sector, as quoted by Reuters, December 2, 2021.
"Whether it’s [opposition leader] Lula or Bolsonaro, Brazil is not at risk of turning into the next Venezuela.”
One person involved in many of Latin America's larger transactions, as quoted by Financial Times, November 30, 2021.
“There’s an awful lot of gloom out there. What is really concerning people is that several economies which were considered stable for a long time are all of a sudden in question.”
Eric Farnsworth, vice-president of the Council of the Americas, as quoted by Financial Times, November 30, 2021.
"Although early to pass judgment, the risk here is that the new nominee is either not sufficiently independent from the government, or not sufficiently experienced for what is ultimately a highly technical job, or both."
Alberto Ramos, the chief Latin America economist at Goldman Sachs Group Inc., on the appointment of Deputy Finance Minister Victoria Rodriguez as Central Bank Governor, as quoted by Bloomberg, November 24, 2021.
“If people go to the supermarket and only see two products on the shelves, both products may be bad but they will have to pick one of them. We need to introduce more products.”
Sergio Moro, anti-corruption crusader and Brazilian presidential candidate who hopes to be third alternative to Lula and Bolsaonaro, as quoted by Bloomberg, November 18, 2021.
"We're overplaying the IMF program, because at most it's going to be a temporary Band-Aid to hold the expectations and delay the run on banks for four months. Then everything will play out because you look at these guys ... What are you going to expect from this government?"
Alejandro Werner, who was the head of the IMF’s Western Hemisphere Department for nearly a decade before he left in August, as quoted by Reuters, October 29, 2021.
“No multinational is going to put money in a country where you don't know what will happen in the short term. Resources that were already planned for Brazil were postponed by the headquarters and we are talking again. It's very negative for the country.”
Alexandre França, CEO of Indian-Brazilian pharmaceutical company Lupin Medquímica, quoted by Valor Economico, October 24, 2021.
“The signals are terrible. They mean more inflation and less growth.”
Gustavo Brotto, chief investment officer at Greenbay Investimentos, said of the additional spending by Brazil's government, as quoted by Bloomberg, October 22, 2021.
"Latin American leaders like [Colombia's Ivan] Duque, Alberto Fernández of Argentina and Sebastián Piñera of Chile, who have made ambitious pledges to cut emissions, don’t need attaboys from the Biden administration, but rather big-ticket investments in renewable energy and energy storage and transmission projects."
Benjamin N. Gedan, deputy director of the Wilson Center’s Latin American Program, in The New York Times, October 20, 2021.
"Some think I should do more to contain inflation. Do what else? Give an example."
Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro, as quoted by AP, October 8, 2021.
"This is a terrible message that will scare away investments."
Pablo de la Flor, executive director of the National Society of Mining, Oil and Energy, said in a statement quoted by Reuters, September 27, 2021, commenting on the Peruvian government's plans to renegotiate its contract with the Pluspetrol-led Camisea consortium, the largest natural gas player in Peru.
“I want to tell those who want to make me unelectable in Brazil: Only God removes me from there.”
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, at a rally in Sao Paulo as he again threatened to not respect next year's presidential elections, as quoted by Ap, September 7, 2021.
"You can’t have a president who says, ‘I won’t accept rule of law,’ or says, ‘I will only accept the laws I like.’ That’s not a democracy.”
Thomas Traumann, a political analyst, said Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro “crossed the Rubicon” on democracy, as quoted by AP, September 7, 2021.
“It’s one thing for an American to bet his stimulus cheque on cryptocurrency in the hope of big returns, but this is Yolo [you only live once] investing elevated to the national level.”
Daniel Munevar, a Colombian economist focused on debt justice, on El Salvador implementing bitcoin as official currency, as quoted by The Guardian, August 30, 2021.
“It’s going to take more than a powerpoint slide in their quarterly presentation to say that they're handling ESG issues.”
John Padilla, managing director at energy consultancy IPD Latin America, on Pemex ESG reporting amidst two major fires, as quoted by Bloomberg, August 27, 2021.
"With Bolsonaro creating crises, bringing rising fiscal risks and a lack of policy balance, the market will gradually abandon him."
Sergio Vale, from MB Associados, on the loss of hope of any reforms by Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro, as quoted by Folha. de S. Paulo, August 20, 2021
"Mexico doesn't need to be told what to do."
Mexican EConomy Minister Tatiana Clouthier on USTR requests on labor issues, as quoted by Milenio, August 11, 2021.
"It is a question that might have been devised by Cantinflas, a comic actor who turned the Mexican taste for circumlocution into an absurdist art form."
The Economist, July 15, 2021, on the question asked Mexican voters in President Andrés Manuel López Obrador's show trial of five ex-presidents.
“It’s not displacing the private sector, it’s creating order.”
President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, announcing plans to have state electricity company CFE supply 54% of power in the country, as quoted by Reuters, July 14, 2021.
“If this is the way the United States Congress wants to battle corruption in Honduras, it’s like wanting to cure cancer with aspirin.”
Honduras analyst Raúl Pineda Alvarado, on a new US blacklist of Central American officials and ex-officials, as quoted by AP, July 1, 2021.
"If you only read the papers, you'd think we're all dying in the streets or on our way to burn the Amazon."
Roberto Sallouti, CEO of Banco BTG Pactual, as quoted by Bloomberg, June 30, 2021.
"This may just reflect a long-term initiative or maybe even just a flashy PR tactic; however it shows lack of coordination with impulsive announcements that contradict a cohesive economic plan.”
Siobhan Morden, head of Latin America fixed income strategy at Amherst Pierpoint Securities, on El Salvador President Nayib Bukele’s initiative to make his country the world’s first to adopt bitcoin as legal tender, as quoted by Reuters, June 8, 2021.
“If you want to make money, then you are by definition corrupt.”
Duncan Wood, Senior Advisor to the Mexico Institute at the Wilson Center, on Mexican President Andres Manuel López Obrador, as quoted by The Wall Street Journal, June 4, 2021.
“We are going backwards. We are losing what we gained in the last 30 years.”
José Antonio Crespo, a political analyst at the CIDE university in Mexico City, on Mexican President Andres Manuel López Obrador's reforms, as quoted by The Wall Street Journal, June 4, 2021.
“Sometimes there are countries that feel like they rule the world, they forget that the world has around 200 countries that are free, independent and sovereign.”
Mexican President Andres Manuel López Obrador, reacting to a downgrade of Mexico air safety rating by the US FAA, as quoted by the El Financiero, May 28, 2021.
“To lose market share when it takes so much time to open up new export markets, and to begin to lose jobs in a sector that’s working well, this measure is really inexplicable.”
María Castiglioni, director of consulting firm C&T Asesores in Buenos Aires, on the Argentine government's new ban on exports of beef, as quoted by Bloomberg, May 20, 2021.
"AMLO is so deeply devoted to his Fourth Transformation of Mexico that the niceties of democracy will be sacrificed if necessary.”
Pamela K. Starr, Director of the U.S.-Mexico Network, the University of Southern California (USC), as quoted by Latinvex, May 20, 2021.
"López Obrador believes the popular mandate he won in the elections is sufficient for his projects to pass...that it gives him permission to violate the constitution or break laws."
Ana Laura Magaloni, a Mexican constitutional expert, on the increasingly authoritarian policies of President Andres Manuel López Obrador, as quoted by the Financial Times, May 3, 2021.
"I wasn't afraid of Pablo Escobar. Much less so of Carrasquilla."
Cesar Gaviria, Colombia's president 1990-94 and current head of its Liberal Party, on his opposition against Alberto Carrasquilla and his tax reform before Carrasquilla resigned as finance minister and the reform withdrawn, as quoted by Semana, April 27, 2021.
“It just doesn’t feel to many of us here in the United States that Mexico is taking its USMCA obligations seriously at all. The effort to rush this proposal through…is illustrative of that."
Brian Pomper, executive director of the Alliance for Trade Enforcement (AFTE) about a new film bill in Mexico, as quoted by Mexico Today, April 26, 2021.
“During my mission, I found these really good-hearted people and I was furious to see the class system that existed there.”
David Neeleman, founder of Azul and JetBlue airlines, on his time as a missionary in Brazil, as quoted by FlightGlobal, April 19, 2021.
“Despite being part of the financial system, these people are fed up with Bolsonaro, with the way he has conducted the pandemic, with the way he conducts his government. It is a disaster. He has been a disaster."
Mailson da Nobrega, a former Brazilian finance minister, on an open letter from Brazilian businesspeople regarding Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, as quoted by the Financial Times, March 25, 2021.
“Perhaps the top exponent in Latin America of what I call ‘ideological necrophilia’ — a passionate attraction to ideas and ideologies which have been tried and tested, and failed, an infinite number of times in Mexico and Latin America. He is deeply in love with bad ideas.”
Moisés Naím, a fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, on Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, as quoted by the Financial Times, March 23, 2020.
“He’s like Rip Van Winkle. He comes from the past and he is stuck in the past.”
Enrique Krauze, a Mexican historian, comparing Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador to the fictional character who falls asleep for 20 years and reawakens to a vastly changed world, as quoted by the Financial Times, March 23, 2020.
“He has firmly oriented the Mexican economic ship towards the 20th century.”
Ernesto Revilla, head of Latin American economics at Citigroup and a former Mexican finance ministry official, on Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, as quoted by the Financial Times, March 23, 2020.
“The markets will be scared of [Lula] due to the view of more public spending, growing debt, less privatisation, more intervention and so on. [But] the markets are also becoming scared of Bolsonaro as well. It’s like having to choose who is less worse.”
Brazil asset manager on the possibility of ex-president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva being able to run next year against President Jair Bolsonaro, as quoted by Financial Times, March 12, 2021.
"The Lula story is certainly a bucket of cold water for those attempting to be bullish with Brazil."
Citi strategists wrote in a note on news that Lula may be able to run again, as quoted by Reuters, March 9, 2021.
“Argentina is in a real mess. They just restructured their debt, and yet the reality is they can’t afford to service it.”
Chris Marsh, a former IMF economist who’s now a senior adviser at Exante Data in London, as quoted by Bloomberg, March 8, 2021.
“Roberto Castello Branco’s removal is one small step for President Jair Bolsonaro’s re-election in 2022, and one giant leap for Brazil’s zany populism."
Mark Langevin, senior advisor to Horizon Client Access, as quoted by the Inter-American Dialogue's weekly Energy Advisor, March 5, 2021.
“If new concessions aren’t awarded, there’s no exploration, and if there’s no exploration, the future of mining is simply in doubt.”
Fernando Alanis, president of Mexican mining chamber Camimex and who until earlier this year was the long-time chief executive officer of Industrias Peñoles, as quoted by Reuters, February 26, 2021.
“There is a risk to have an even more nationalistic approach. It’s not a good signal to place a general when a pro-market guy is being sidelined.”
Marcelo de Assis, the head of Latin American upstream research at Wood Mackenzie Ltd, after Brazil President Bolsonaro fired the well-respected Petrobras CEO and replaced him with an army general, as quoted by Bloomberg, February 24, 2021.
“From the view from the oil industry, the first challenge is he has no background. It’s a problem because it is a market with a lot of volatility.”
Marcelo de Assis, the head of Latin American upstream research at Wood Mackenzie Ltd, on Brazil President Bolsonaro's new Petrobras CEO, Joaquim Luna, as quoted by Bloomberg, February 24, 2021.
“It's a shame that Mexican lawyers are employed by foreign companies that want to continue looting Mexico; of course they are free [to do so], but hopefully they will understand that this is treason."
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, February 22, 2021.
“A good reputation is hard to earn and easy to lose.”
BTG bank analyst Thiago Duarte said in a note to clients, after Brazil President Bolsonaro fired Petrobras CEO in shock move, as quoted by Reuters, February 22, 2021.
“Just as I said they wanted to bring me down in the pandemic by closing the entire economy, now they’ve decided to attack me via energy. We’re going to stick our finger into the electric sector, which is another problem.”
Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro he told supporters, as quoted by Reuters, february 22, 2021.
“Nobody believed in Bolsonaro’s liberalism anymore. But there were still those who believed that he would make room for the so-called liberal agenda. It’s over,” The king is naked.”
Jose Francisco Gonçalves, chief economist at Brazil's Banco Fator, on President Jair Bolsonaro's firing of Petrobras CEO after a dispute over fuel prices, as quoted by Bloomberg, February 19, 2021.
“[The removal of Castello Branco] will have a great impact on the company’s value and on its medium and long-term credibility. The prognosis is a very prolonged downward bias.”
Claudio Porto, founder of energy consultancy Macroplan, on President Jair Bolsonaro's firing of Petrobras CEO after a dispute over fuel prices, as quoted by the Financial Times, February 19, 2021.
“The president has chosen economic populism. Positions against fiscal equilibrium, favouring of certain groups and, now, aggressively interfering at a publicly traded, state-run company. The recent signals are really bad.”
Sergio Goldenstein, a former Brazil Central Bank director who’s currently a consultant at OHMResearch, on President Jair Bolsonaro's firing of Petrobras CEO after a dispute over fuel prices, as quoted by Bloomberg, February 19, 2021.
"It's one shock to say the biggest natural gas producer in the world all of a sudden doesn't have natural gas, and then it's a second shock to say the market-driven process we thought existed is all of a sudden subject to political intervention of a kind we haven't seen,"
James Coleman, an energy law professor at Southern Methodist University, on the fnatural gas problems in Texas, as quoted by Argus Media, February 19, 2021.
"If the private sector can get a Coca-Cola to the remotest point on this map of Peru, and I can’t get there with a paracetamol, we’re doing something wrong and they’re doing something right.”
Victor Zamora, former health minister in Peru, on how the private sector can manage the vaccine distribution better than the public sector, as quoted by Bloomberg, December 10, 2020.
"The public perception has worsened from one where Cristina was calling the shots from the background, to one where no-one is in control."
Perfil Digital Director Agustino Fontevecchia in the Buenos Aires Times, December 5, 2020, on the lack of leadership by Argentine president Alberto Fernandez.
"It’s like Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron not speaking to each other."
A Latin American diplomat in Brussels highlighting that the leaders of the two Mercosur heavyweight nations, Argentina’s Alberto Fernández and Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro, have still not yet had a bilateral meeting, despite the Peronist leader having been sworn-in almost one year ago, as quoted by the Buenos Aires Times, November 23, 2020.
“This invitation is not compatible with free-market choices that we are used to. We should be able to freely make our best financial decisions.”
A source close to Brazil's top four telcos, which declined to attend a US embassy meeting in Brazil on Huawei, as quoted by Reuters, November 6, 2020.
"What we’re witnessing thus far is no vision, no plan, and no IMF program to anchor policy expectations."
Robert Koenigsberger, the chief investment officer at Gramercy Funds Management, which holds Argentina bonds and was active in the recent debt talks, as quoted by Bloomberg, October 19, 2020.
"They’re just slapping on small band-aids here and there.”
Jorge Piedrahita, managing partner at Gear Capital Partners in New York, on Argentina government handling of economy, as quoted by Bloomberg, October 19, 2020.
“Lopez Obrador’s anti-corruption drive is much ado about nothing. It’s a great story, and a poor reality.”
Emilio Alvarez Icaza, an independent opposition senator in Mexico, commenting on the country's president, as quoted by Reuters, October 14, 2020.
“All we ask ... is that they stop rescuing large corporations and that they rescue the people, that they stop covering up for corrupt governments."
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on the International Monetary Fund, after it recommended he change his economic policies, as quoted by Reuters, October 7, 2020.
“The existence of some bad apples that deserve prosecution is far from a position in which all taxpayers and the legal advisers who represent them are presumed to be criminals."
London-based International Bar Association saying Mexico’s tax authority (SAT) and fiscal prosecutor’s office “openly threatened the rule of law” and was targeting the law firms and accountants who assist taxpayers, as quoted by Reuters, September 19, 2020.
“It shows total desperation. They have just hung a sign around their necks that says ‘meltdown’.”
Agustín Monteverde, an economist at consultancy Massot Monteverde & Asociados in Buenos Aires, on the Argentine government's new currency restrictions, as quoted by Reuters, September 17, 2020.
"There’d be an end to the threats and bullying that countries have experienced in the Trump years."
Cynthia Arnson, Latin America director at the Woodrow Wilson Center, on what a Joe Biden presidency would mean for Latin America, as quoted by the Financial Times, September 15, 2020.
“[Biden] would be the first president who doesn’t require an explanation as to why Brazil is important.”
Thomas Shannon, who held top posts at the State Department and is now co-chair of the Inter-American Dialogue in Washington, as quoted by the Financial Times, September 15, 2020.
"To say that Panama owes FCC is an insult. Panamanians have to be respected."
Panama President Laurentino Cortizo on a lawsuit by FCC demanding pay for an unfinished hospital, as quoted by AFP, September 4, 2020.
"Government cuts “go beyond austerity — it’s austericide,” he said. “You make it very difficult to provide basic public services.”
A former senior finance ministry official quoted by the Financial Times, September 3, 2020, on the drastic cuts in government spending by Mexican presideent Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.
“Our perception is that white collar criminals are celebrating.”
Melina Flores, a Brazilian federal prosecutor who worked on high-profile corruption cases in capital Brasília, on the recent exit of justice minister Sergio Moro, the face of the successful car Wash anti-corruption probes, as quoted by The New York Times, August 29, 2020.
"Mexico’s president shows how not to handle a scandal."
Headline of editorial in The Economist, August 29, 2020 on Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s handling of anti-corruption allegations by former Pemex CEO Lozoya.
"Intent on damaging their countries’ institutional settings so as to advance retrograde political agendas, they resemble wrecking balls."
Arminio Fraga, former president of Brazil’s central bank, and Guillermo Ortiz,former governor of Mexico’s central bank and Mexico’s finance secretary, in the Financial Times, August 27, 2020, on the governments of presidents Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil and Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador of Mexico.
“I want to punch you in the face, OK?”
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro to a reporter from the O Globo newspaper that askeed about bank deposits made in the account of his wife, First Lady Michelle Bolsonaro, by a former aide to one of his sons., as reported by Reuters, August 23, 2020.
“He decided to open the sewer, and now all this is coming out. This falls out from using corruption as a political tool instead of building a strategy to eradicate it.”
Benito Nacif, a former Mexican election commissioner who focused on party financing, on allegation of illegal cash donations to Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, as quoted by Bloomberg, August 23, 2020.
“The phone does not stop ringing from Mexico. Every day you hear of a new Mexican family moving to Miami.”
Miami-based Philippe Stiernon, founder of ROAM Capital, which helps U.S. private equity firms raise money in Latin America, as quoted by Bloomberg, July 17, 2020.
“You have all these political attacks on the wealthy, and that is creating a lot of fear.
Salvador Juncadella, director of business strategy at Boston-based investment adviser Twin Focus, which is seeking to capture clients from Mexico and other countries in Latin America, on Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, as quoted by Bloomberg, July 17, 2020.
“People are very nervous about what Lopez Obrador could do. They are asking ‘where can I protect my patrimony where this guy cannot touch it?’”
Diego de la Mora, who since 2016 has helped run a $200 million fund for Canadian institutional investors seeking to buy Mexican real estate and now is doing the oppositive, as quoted by Bloomberg, July 17, 2020.
“The champagne isn’t quite as fizzy as we might have expected - even under the best of circumstances - and there’s trouble coming from all sides. This could be a trade agreement that quickly ends up in dispute and higher trade barriers.”
Mary Lovely, a Syracuse University economics professor and senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington, on the new USMCA trade deal, as quoted by Reuters, July 1, 2020.
“This is like a horror movie where the villain keeps coming back from the dead."
John Murphy, Senior Vice President for International Policy at the US Chamber of Commerce, on how Donald Trump's unilateral and unpredictable actions againt trade partners can undermine the new USMCA, as quoted by Latinvex, July 1, 2020.
“Just as China is losing its luster and Mexico should be saying ‘we are open for business, come on over,’ they’re putting the brakes on new FDI [foreign direct investment]."
Nelson Balido, a trade consultant based in Texas, on Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's investor-hostile policies, as quoted by the Financial Times, June 29, 2020.
“Was he running away from someone? It would be the first time in history that someone says he is in exile and has the support of the government. It is usually the other way around.”
Brazilian House Speaker Rodrigo Maia, commenting on news that former education minister Abraham Weintraub "fled" to Miami, as quoted by Reuters, June 23, 2020.
“This has to do with Spanish companies that see Mexico as a land to be conquered.”
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, alleging that Mexican power contracts were won by Spanish companies due to “influence peddling” although he did not give details of the alleged wrongdoing, as quoted by Reuters, June 17, 2020.
“It is a small victory for the USA and a great defeat for Latin America.”
Mauricio Cardenas, former finance minister of Colombia on Trump nominating one of his own advisors to lead the Inter-American Development Bank, breaking with tradition to have a Latin American president, as quoted by Reuters, June 16, 2020.
"The jury is out, literally on what chances Mexico has not to become a one-man show."
Juan Francisco Torres Landa, Managing Partner of the Mexico City office of Hogan Lovells, on Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's increasing authoritarianism, as quoted by Latinvex, June 17, 2020.
"The most worrying aspect is that the President does not seem to care about this loss of prestige and remains rigid in his speeches of economic and social well-being, all of which are far from reflecting the reality."
Luis Rubio Barnetche, Executive partner of the Mexico City office of Holland & Knight, on Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and the growing investor concern amidst radical policies, as quoted by Latinvex, June 17, 2020.
“We are becoming an international joke in terms of public health. Deaths cannot be hidden by decree.”
Domingos Alves, an associate professor of social medicine at the University of Sao Paulo, on Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro removing all historical data on COVID-19, as quoted by thee Associated Press, June 7, 2020.
"If life were a morality tale, Mr Bolsonaro’s coronavirus antics would lead Brazil to turn against its populist president. But reality may not be so simple."
Gideon Rachman, chief foreign affairs commentator for the Financial Times, writing about Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro, on May 25, 2020.
"There can’t be a single foreign investor who’s not afraid every time they want to do a project in Mexico because they know there’s no stability in the rules.”
Daniel Sánchez, partner at law firm Baker McKenzie, after the Mexican government suddenly changed the rules for renewable companies, as quoted by the Financial Times, May 24, 2020.
“If you’re thinking of opening a plant, investing fresh money, chances are you won’t do it in Mexico now.”
A former top trade official after the Mexican government suddenly changed the rules for renewable companies, as quoted by the Financial Times, May 24, 2020.
“The government’s capacity for listening is virtually non-existent."
A senior businessman in the northern industrial city of Monterrey after the Mexican government suddenly changed the rules for renewable companies, as quoted by the Financial Times, May 24, 2020.
“I didn’t enter the government to serve a master. I entered it to serve the country, the law.”
Sergio Moro, Brazil's former justice minister and renowned judge who led the Car Wash anti-corruption probes, as quoted by Time magazine, May 21, 2020.
"Those who are on the right take chloroquine. Those on the left take Tubaína."
Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro joking, referring to a popular soft drink and defending the use of the unproven drug chloroquine as a remedy, despite alerts it may be unsafe as Brazil sees a surge in coronavirus infections and deaths, as quoted by the BBC, May 20, 2020.
"They plundered more during the neo-liberal period than they did in three centuries of colonial domination."
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, attacking foreign companies in Mexico, as quoted by Reuters, May 18, 2020.
“Because their disinformation efforts in the Mexican press aren’t working, they’ve gone to newspapers from other parts of the world.So what characterizes these newspapers, speaking frankly? They have also been taken by the big international, economic and financial corporations.”
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, attacking critics and critical reports in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and The Washington Post, as quoted by Reuters, May 18, 2020.
“I’m not going to wait for [the federal police] to fuck my family and friends just for shits and giggles.”
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro to ministers, quoted by The Guardian, May 15, 2020.
"Bolsonaro has been screwing up with a certain frequency. There is a pandemic everywhere in the world, but here you have a pandemic coupled with a political crisis. It is a tremendous problem."
A Brazilian infrastructure investor, commenting on the antics of President Jair Bolsonaro, as quoted by the Financial Times, May 4, 2020.
“What Guedes preached was music to our ears. If he leaves, it would be a total disaster. There is a high level of irresponsibility as Bolsonaro is very impulsive.”
A senior banker from São Paulo’s Avenida Faria Lima, known as Brazil’s Wall Street, commenting on the antics of President Jair Bolsonaro, as quoted by the Financial Times, May 4, 2020.
“So what? I’m sorry. What do you want me to do?”
Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro when asked about the record 474 deaths on April 28, as quoted by The Guardian, April 29, 2020.
“How is it that they reach an agreement and (then ask the Mexican Ministry of) Finance to endorse it? Are we just supposed to stand here and look pretty?”
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador attacking a $12 billion loan deal between the Inter-American Development Bank and Mexico's private sector, amidst no government stimulus for companies, as quoted by Mexico Today, April 28, 2020.
“No one, not even the president, is above the constitution and the law.”
Brazilian Supreme Federal Court Justice José Celso de Mello Filho, who ruled that an investigation into President Jair Bolsonaro’s alleged meddling in police probes of his sons, as quoted by The Washington Post, April 28, 2020.
“The president caused his own isolation. A massive public health crisis, an unprecedented economic crisis, and now this — the minister of justice, who has the highest reputation in Brazil as a corruption-fighting judge, making these accusations against the president. It is very bad for the country.”
Brazilian Senator Sérgio Olímpio Gomes, until recently one of President Jair Bolsonaro’s most trusted supporters in the National Congress, as quoted by The Washington Post, April 28, 2020.
"We're seeing the government come apart. There are rumors that the next to go is Paulo Guedes. With that, the government is finished."
Fernando Bergallo, head of currency trading at FB Capital, on the resignation of Brazil's well-respected Justice Minister Sergio Moro, as quoted by Reuters, April 25, 2020.
"The president is digging his pit. Resign before being resigned.5
Former Brazilian President Cardoso on Twitter, April 24, 2020.
“The lack of leadership, the lack of co-ordination, the lack of public policy have turned this into chaos.”
Marcos Lisboa, an economist and head of the Insper business school in São Paulo, on President Jair Bolsonaro's response to the Cov id-19 pandemic, as quoted by the Financial Times, April 19, 2020.
“In addition to the risks he poses to democracy and public health, Bolsonaro also brings the country to a standstill while we all wait for his erratic decisions."
Daniela Campello, a professor of politics at the Getúlio Vargas Foundation, as quoted by the Financial Times, April 19, 2020.
"The appalling humanitarian catastrophe of Venezuela stands as a clear warning of what another four and a half years of Mr López Obrador could do to Mexico."
Editorial in the Financial Times, April 14, 2020, criticizing Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's economic policies and handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Any plan that he has that is Pemex-centric will show that he’s not yet serious about engaging with the international investment community.”
George Baker, the Houston-based publisher of Mexico Energy Intelligence, on Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's energy policies, as quoted by Reuters, April 7, 2020.
“He has demonstrated that he is unfit to be president. He remains in power for one very simple reason: No one wants to create a political crisis to oust him in the midst of a health emergency.”
Maria Hermínia Tavares de Almeida, a political scientist at the University of São Paulo, on Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro, as quoted by The New York Times, April 1, 2020.
“On all fronts, the vote was illegal."
Gustavo de Hoyos, head of Mexico's employer's group Coparmex, on President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's "referendum" stopping the $1.4 billion Constellation Brands brewery, as quoted by Bloomberg, March 25, 2020.
“The spillover effect of the Constellation Brands project is going to be huge. This is just gonna frighten investors even more than they have been already.”
Duncan Wood, director of the Wilson Center’s Mexico Institute in Washington, on President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's "referendum" stopping the $1.4 billion Constellation Brands brewery, as quoted by Bloomberg, March 25, 2020.
“A bullet in the brain would be less damaging than what they’re doing.”
Juan Francisco Torres Landa, a trade lawyer and partner at Hogan Lovells, on the impact of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's "referendum" stopping the $1.4 billion Constellation Brands brewery, as quoted by the Financial Times, March 23, 2020.
"With Brazil struggling to emerge from a deep recession amid severe market turbulence generated by the coronavirus outbreak, Mr Bolsonaro could scarcely have picked a worse time for a fight."
Editorial in the Financial Times, March 16, 2020, on Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro's attacks against Congress just as he needs their support for badly-needed reforms.
"He’s trapped in his discourse. It’s very, very dangerous and he risks digging a terrific hole. If a boat has a serious risk of sinking, the first thing you do is offload some weight."
Energy analyst Rosanety Barrios on Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's continued insistence on boosting the debt-ridden and money-losing state oil company Pemex, as quoted by the Financial Times, March 11, 2020.
"Mexico needs statecraft, yet its president offers theatre"
The Bello column in The Economist, February 27, 2020, on Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.
“It’s not even possible to put into words how bad these results are for the company.”
Mexican independent oil analyst Gonzalo Monroy on the $18 billion losses at state oil company Pemex, as quoted by Reuter, February 27, 2020.
“If Argentina wants to grow and get out of this mess, it has to treat bondholders with respect.”
Alberto Bernal, chief emerging markets strategist at XP Investments in New York, quoted by Reuters, February 20, 2020.
“It must generate lots of confidence to be extorted by the National Palace."
Valeria Moy, director of the think tank “Mexico, Como Vamos,” and an economist at the Mexico's Autonomous Institute of Technology, in a post on Twitter, February 13, 2020, commenting on President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's dinner with prominent businesspeople where he asked them to participate in his controversial raffle.
“I guess each of us have decided where to have dinner today.”
Tweet on February 13, 2020 by Alvaro Fernandez, CEO of conglomerate Alfa SAB, who declined to attend a dinner at the Mexican presidential palace where President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador asked prominent businesspeople to participate in his controversial raffle.
"Everybody was going to Disneyland, the maid was going to Disneyland, it was a hell of a party."
Brazilian Economy Minister Paulo Guedes on when the Real was stronger compared with the US dollar, as quoted by Folha de S. Paulo, February 12, 2020.
“I don’t know how that’s physically possible."
Talos Energy Chief Executive Officer Tim Duncan on statements from Pemex CEO Octavio Romero that the reservoir Asab would hypothetically be brought into production next year, as quoted by Reuter, February 11, 2020.
"Forget 21st-century socialism: This is a good old barony of bandits."
Bloomberg columnist Mac Margolis, February 10, 2020, on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro giving lpatronage jobs, a cut of public concessions and even authority over basic bureaucratic functionss to favored bureaucrats, political operators, military officials and assortment of felons.
"These are not reforms, they’re tidbits for cronies. It’s all a balancing act."
Monica de Bolle, senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, quoted by Bloomberg, February 10, 2020, on recent changes in Venezuela.
"Maduro’s market maneuvers bespeak a leader who wants to have his revolution and short it, too."
Bloomberg columnist Mac Margolis, February 10, 2020, on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro
"His ego is probably bigger than that of Trump and an arrogance without parallel."
Germán Efromovich, majority shareholder of Colombian airline Avianca, on minority shareholder Roberto Kriete, as quoted by Semana, Fenruary 8, 2020.
"Because I come from the real estate industry, the sunset concept made a lot of sense to me."
Jared Kushner, son-in-law and adviser of President Donald Trump, on the controversial sunset clause in the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) trade deal, in an op-ed in CNBC, February 4, 2020.
"Privatization without deregulation is nothing more than a #Ferrari without gas."
Steve Hanke, professor of applied economics at Johns Hopkins University, on Nicolas Maduro's plans to privatize oil in Venezuela, in a Tweet, February 1, 2020.
“Our hope is that there is an investment opportunity in Mexico. I would say there isn’t today, unfortunately.”
Ferris Hussein, Carlyle’s managing director for energy and power infrastructure, as quoted by Bloomberg, january 29, 2020.
"This government isn’t doing anything to entice investment. All they’re good at is cancelling stuff.”
The head of one big Canadian company investing in Mexico, as quoted by the Financial Tines, January 27, 2020.
“We have seen with profound concern how the perception of uncertainty and hostility to private investment has increased It is taking a great deal of work to convince our headquarters to invest in Mexico.”
Claudia Jañez, president of the Executive Council of Global Companies and Latin American chief of US chemicals group DuPont, to journalists a day before the US Senate vote on the USMCA, as quoted by the Financial Tines, January 27, 2020.
"The result has been disastrous."
Anne Krueger, former World Bank chief economist and former first deputy managing director of the International Monetary Fund, on Donald Trump's protectionist trade policies, in her Project Syndicate column, January 24, 2020.
“It’s just so unfair that American companies aren’t allowed to pay bribes to get business overseas. We’re going to change that.”
President Donald Trump quoted in the new book “A Very Stable Genius: Donald J. Trump’s Testing of America,” by Washington Post reporters Philip Rucker and Carol D. Leonnig
“There’s not really any light at the end of the tunnel. The market generally believes its strategy is the wrong one.”
Graham Stock, a partner and senior sovereign strategist at BlueBay Asset Management, on the Mexican government's strategy of betting on state oil company Pemex and weakening private oil activity, as quoted by the Financial Times, January 8, 2020.
“So you have a Pemex for which producing costs more every day because of declining fields and if it puts [oil] into its refineries, it loses money."
Independent analyst Rosanety Barrios as quoted by the Financial Times, January 8, 2020.
“Foreign investors are looking for reality rather than rhetoric."
Greg Konstantinidis, a portfolio manager at Fidelity International, on how factors such as high unemployment and low capacity utilition are signs of a weak economic growth backdrop, quoted by the Financial Times, December 17, 2019.
“We have a schizophrenic Brazil at the moment. You have Dr Jekyll: the economic team, plus competent ministers in areas such as infrastructure and agriculture. And you have Mr Hyde: Bolsonaro and his social agenda covering education, morals, the environment, plus the antics of members of his family. The risk for Brazil is that growth takes too long to appear, the people grow restive and Mr Hyde takes over.”
A senior investment banker in São Paulo, quoted by the Financial Times, December 2, 2019.
“Congress is governing despite Bolsonaro. If we had somebody capable as president who could negotiate with Congress, the economy would be growing much faster."
The chairman of one bank in São Paulo, referring to pro-business legislators passing reforms despite the weak and erratic President Jair Bolsonaro, as quoted by the Financial Times, December 2, 2019.
“Brazil’s president thought he had a big brother. Now he realizes he does not.” Carlos Melo, a political science professor at the Insper University in Sao Paulo, as quoted by The Associated Press, December 2, 2019.
“This is an unfair relationship. Brazil is making gesture after gesture to support the U.S. in international forums, but the U.S. is not doing the same."
Rubens Barbosa, a former Brazilian ambassador to Washington, told The Associated Press, December 2, 2019.
"Chile and Argentina are a very clear signal that if reforms are to succeed, people need food on the table."
Gabriella Dorlhiac, executive director of the International Chamber of Commerce in Brazil, as quoted by the Financial Times, December 2, 2019.
"Argentina is in the emergency ward and the economy, which is the patient, is in critical condition and gasping for oxygen."
Anupam Damani, a portfolio manager for US asset manager Nuveen’s global fixed-income team, on the urgency of president-elect Alberto Fernandez to start engaging with the IMF and bondholders, as quoted by the Financial Times, November 19, 2019.
“Total disaster is the best way to describe this morning’s round.”
Ivan Cima, a managing director at consultancy Welligence, referring to lack of private participation and the loss of $9 billion in potential signing bonuses to be received by the government at the November 6 oil auction in Brazil, as quoted by Reuters, November 6, 2019.
"After nearly nine months in office, Bolsonaro is still the provocateur-in-chief, for whom no venue is too august to forego a screed or vent an ideological conceit."
Bloomberg columnist Mac Margolis, September 25, 2019, on Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro using UN General Assembly to attack international "meddling" in Amazon fires.
“This looks to me like a step backwards."
Pablo Medina, a Mexico City-based oil analyst with Welligence, on new Pemex public-private partnerships exploration, extraction contracts, as quoted by Reuters, September 10, 2019.
"The government's bellicose rhetoric makes it difficult for foreign investors to appreciate the reformist content."
Christopher Garman, Managing Director for the Americas of political risk consultancy Eurasia Group, as quoted by Valor Economico, September 6, 2019.
"There's no point in having oil if in order to extract it you have to let multinationals come and take it away."
Argentina's Peronist candidate for president, Alberto Fernandez, during a visit to Madrid, as quoted by Reuters, September 5, 2019.
"Just because the Wall Street Journal said it doesn't mean it's true. I've seen them lying before."
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, commenting on a WSJ report that his ally, billionaire Ricardo Salinas Pliego (photo) owned equity in a fertilizer company that was bought by state oil company Pemex - in a deal that is at the heart of a corruption probe over whether officials overpaid for the assets, as quoted by Bloomberg, September 5, 2019.
"There don’t appear to be any adults left in the room with the ability or inclination to restrain his worst impulses.”
Robert Muggah from Rio de Janeiro think tank Igarape Institute, after Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro's erratic behavour over Amazon fires and deforestation and growing insults against France and Europe, as quoted by AFP, August 29, 2019.
“Germany and in particular France are buying our sovereignty. It seems that US$20 million is our price. Brazil doesn’t have a price of 20 million or 20 trillion – it’s the same thing for us.”
Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro on the G7 $20 million offer of aid to fight Amazon fires, as quoted by AFP, August 29, 2019.
"Today we have a happy ending, but this is a situation the government created.”
Pablo Zárate, managing director of FTI Consulting and an energy expert, on the announced deal between Mexico's state electricity company CFE and private pipeline companies, as quoted by the Financial Times, August 27, 2019.
“He’s won the battle, but not the war."
Industry source familiar with the negotiations between Mexico's state electricity company CFE and private pipeline companies, on the renegotoated contract announced by Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, as quoted by Reuters, August 27, 2019.
"I hope that they will quickly have a president who is up to the job."
French President Emmanuel Macron talking about Brazil after he described his Brazilian counterpart Jair Bolsonaro as "extremely disrespectful" after the South American leader appeared to mock his wife, Brigitte Macron, in a Facebook post, as quoted by The Guardian, August 26, 2019.
"This is the worst crisis Brazil has had for its image in 50 years."
Rubens Ricupero, Former Secretary General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, former Brazil minister of finance and former minister for the environment and Amazonian affairs, on President Jair Bolsonaro's handling of the Amazon deforestation and fires, as quoted by Globo, August 23, 2019.
"Macri deserves a monument because he tried to bring Argentina to an open market economy...No other Argentine will do so again."
Horst Paulmann, owner of Chilean supermarket company Cencosud, on Argentina President Mauricio Macri, who is expected to lose re-election in October, as quoted by El Mercurio, August 18, 2019.
“You have a president who is basically torpedoing this deal, not only with his environmental policy, but with the way he presents it to the world."
Oliver Stuenkel, international affairs expert at the Getulio Vargas Foundation in Sao Paulo, on Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro's Amazon policies and attacks and insults against Germany and France, which now threaten the newly signed EU-Mercosur trade deal, as quoted by Reuters, August 16, 2019.
“The environmental policy of this government is the intelligent use of the country’s natural resources.”
Brazil Foreign Trade Secretary Marcos Troyjo, defending the government’s policy on the Amazon, despite a surge in deforestation and weakening of environmental and scientific agencies that led Germany and Norway to stop funding the Amazon Fund, as quoted by Reuters, August 16, 2019.
“Isn’t Norway that country that kills whales up there in the North Pole? Take that money and help Angela Merkel reforest Germany."
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, responding to news that Norway and Germany will cut funding to the Amazon Fund as a result of a deforestation surge under Bolsonaro and his changes to the fund's structure and management, as quoted by Reuters, August 15, 2019.
"The joke about Argentina’s habit of electing populist leaders says: If you go back to that country after a week, everything has changed, but if you go back after 30 years, nothing has changed."
Miami Herald columnist and Argentine native Andres Oppenheimer, August 12, 2019.
“Everyone is paralyzed.”
How the business community is dealing with Mexico’s president, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, as quoted by Bloomberg, August 6, 2019.
“The moment is so good that, even with the president talking rubbish, the impact is zero.”
Renato Nobile, the president of Genial Advisory, which manages around 30 billion reais ($7.8 billion) in Brazil assets, on the impact of President Jair Bolsonaro's controversial comments while the government’s progress on its reform agenda will soon start to have an impact on the real economy, as quoted by Bloomberg, August 2, 2019.
“He will have to understand that the Brazilian government changed and that subservience we had in the past with other governments does not exist anymore."
Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro, talking about the French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian ahead of a meeting that Bolsonaro in the end cancelled to get a hair cut instead, as quoted by Reuters, July 31, 2019.
"We’re doing well economically, and the economic and social situation in our country is getting better and better.”
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, as quoted by Reuters, July 29, 2019. Two days later, data showed second quarter growth of only 0.1 percent after a 0.2 percent decline in the first quarter. Three days later, his own finance ministry cut its GDP estimate for the year to only 1.1 percent.
"Markets will be unforgiving if these documents signal further deviations from economic reality."
Editorial in Financial Times, July 10, 2019 on Mexico's planned release of the much-delayed business plan and the 2020 budget, following the protest resignation of Finance Minister Carlos Urzua.
“With this deal we are showing that we believe that trade is a good thing."
EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom, following the clinching of the EU-Mercosur trade deal in the Belgian capital of Brussels, as quoted by AP, June 28, 2019.
“In the midst of international trade tensions, we are sending today a strong signal with our Mercosur partners that we stand for rules-based trade.”
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, following the clinching of the EU-Mercosur trade deal in the Belgian capital of Brussels, as quoted by AP, June 28, 2019.
"In a world in which there is arbitrary use of commercial regulation by the United States, no cross-border investment looks to be as safe and useful as it used to."
Adam Posen, President of the Peterson Institute for International Economics, as quoted by The New York Times, June 19, 2019.
“Everything that was built over the past 30 years is being destroyed by the U.S. president because he’s taking political advantage of this strategy to accuse Mexico of the evils taking place in the U.S.”
Andres Rozental, a deputy foreign minister under Mexican President Carlos Salinas, who negotiated Nafta with the U.S. and Canada, as quoted by Bloomberg, June 18, 2019.
“He said what everyone thought, but he shouldn’t have said it.”
Unnamed fund manager in Sao Paulo, on Brazil Finance Minister Paulo Guedes' public cricticism of the watered down pension reform, as quoted by Reuters, June 14, 2019.
“All they’re doing is diverting from one pocket to the other.”
John Padilla, managing director of IPD Latin America, an energy consultant, on the changes at Mexican state oil company Pemex, as quoted by Bloomberg, June 13, 2019.
"Investors are less interested in seeing Romero root out bad apples at Pemex than they are in his containing the spreading rot on its balance sheet."
Bloomberg article on Octavio Romero, CEO of Mexican state oil Pemex company, June 13, 2019.
“This really came out of left field. It was something we thought we had settled, and we hadn’t.”
Daniel Ujczo, a trade lawyer at Dickinson Wright, commenting on Trump’s abrupt move to threaten to tax Mexican goods, as quoted by Associated Press, June 12, 2019.
“It was a good wakeup call for business.”
James Jones, chairman of Monarch Global Strategies and a former U.S. ambassador to Mexico, commenting on Trump’s abrupt move to threaten to tax Mexican goods, as quoted by Associated Press, June 12, 2019. .
"We’re just on the edge of our seats here. The threat lingers at the back of our minds."
U.S. watermelon importer Scott Vandervoet on the continued threats of tariffs in imports from Mexico, as quoted by Reuters, June 11, 2019.
"The notion that you put a tariff because there are too many people crossing the border is just miles away from any letter and spirit of the WTO agreement. Which is why I qualify this as hostage-taking."
Pascal Lamy, director general of the World Trade Organization from 2005 to 2013 and a former European commissioner for trade, as quoted by The Guardian, June 8, 2019.
"We are truly moving from the Art of the Deal into the Fog of War."
Adam S. Posen, president of the Peterson Institute for International Economics, in a May 31, 2019 commentary on Trump's plans for a 5-25 percent tariff on all Mexican imports.
“The word ‘wall’ is not something any of us want to use when we’re trying to build alliances with one of the most important countries that we have.”
Thomas Barrack, chief executive officer of Colony Capital and friend of President Donald Trump, as he announced a $5 billion investment plan in Latin America, with a special emphasis on Mexico, as quoted by Reuters, May 22, 2019.
“Bolsonaro despises democracy. We have to isolate his anti-democratic attitude and lack of respect for institutions so this does not paralyze the country.”
Marcelo Ramos, chairman of the Brazilian congressional committee on pension reform, to Reuters, May 22, 2019.
“It’s like white collar fuel theft.”
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, comparing tax forgiveness for the country’s largest companies to the widespread stealing of gasoline from pipelines by organised crime that his government has tried to crack down on, as quoted by Reuters, May 20, 2019.
“If Pemex defaults, it would be Argentina on steroids.”
A senior banker, referring to the chaos the South American nation created by defaulting on its foreign debt in 2001, as quoted by Reuters, May 15, 2019.
“We’ve never had anything like this, that all of a sudden your routes are completely changed.”
Britton Clarke, president of the Border Trade Alliance, an organization focused on North American trade, on the significant dealys at the US-Mexico border because of President Donald Trump's immigration policy, as quoted by the Financial Times, May 14, 2019.
“It will cost us much less than the companies estimate.”
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, announcing that international firms balked at the government's $8 billion price tag and three-year timeline for the planned Dos Bocas oil refinery, as quoted by Reuters, May 9, 2019.
"Over the medium term, Mr López Obrador’s autocratic pursuit of regeneration risks institutional and economic decay."
Editorial in The Financial Times, May 5, 2019, commenting on the first five months of Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.
"The problem is that many of those fundamentals are basically Chinese for the regular people on the street."
Alejandro Catterberg of Poliarquia Consultores at an event hosted by JPMorgan in Washington DC this month, on the positive budgetary achievements of the Macri government amidst inflation and economic recession, as quoted by the Financial Times, April 25, 2019.
"We're closer to Guillermo Moreno than Adam Smith."
Argentine economist José Luis Espert, as quoted by Radio Cooperativa, April 21, 2019, commenting on President Mauricio's Macri populist price freezes similar to those imposed by former commerce minister Guillermo Moreno during the Kirchner government.
"At this point, I think Bolsonaro is a little bit crazy, but I wouldn’t discard Brazil yet."
Luis Maizel, cofounder and senior managing director of LM Capital Group, a $4 billion wealth management firm in San Diego, California, referring to Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, as quoted by Forbes, April 16, 2019.
“Guedes said that he doesn’t really need this job. That’s really got the market spooked.”
Teresa Barger, CEO of Cartica Management, a long-only equity investor, as quoted by Forbes, April 16, 2019.
“In countries like Brazil, what the politicians promise and what they can deliver on takes longer than one would hope."
Andrew Miller, CIO of Mondrian Investment Partners, as quoted by Forbes, April 16, 2019.
“Brazil needs a functioning government ... and the president is playing around with the presidency of Brazil.”
Rodrigo Maia, speaker of Brazil's lower house, as quoted by Reuters, March 27, 2019.
"But it is the president himself who is running this show, and he has no reassuring words at all."
David Shields, independent energy consultant based in Mexico City, in the Inter-American Dialogue’s weekly Energy Advisor, March 22, 2019, on the difference in statements by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and his economic advisors.
"Energy companies are no strangers to political risk, yet Mexico had made strides to mitigate it. Alas, no longer."
Dwight Dyer, independent consultant on political, regulatory and security risk for Mexico’s energy sector, in the Inter-American Dialogue’s weekly Energy Advisor, March 22, 2019.
"There is a significant risk the credit goes below investment grade."
Shamaila Khan, a money manager at AllianceBernstein in New York on Fitch downgrading Pemex, as quoted by Bloomberg, January 29, 2019.
"They are less likely to put money into a country where you have a finance secretary saying that what the president just said makes no sense."
Fabio Knijnik, head of Sao Paulo-based wealth fund K2 Capital, on the contradiction in the new Bolsonaro government, as quoted by Reuters, January 9, 2019.
"This is not the dream team seen in other Mexican cabinets. Instead it's more like a nightmare team."
El Financiero columnist Raymundo Riva Palacio, November 29, 2018, on the cabinet of new Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.
"Everybody is closing the money spigot."
A consultant tells The Wall Street Journal, November 25, 2018, commenting on incoming president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's actions that have spooked local and foreign investors.
“We now have the University of Chicago running major Brazilian institutions.”
James Gulbrandsen, NcH Capital, as quoted by Bloomberg, November 19, 2018.
“The decision by @lopezobrador on the new airport will be remembered as one of the worst stupidities by a president in contemporary economic history. "
Enrique Cárdenas, a professor at the Iberoamericana University in Puebla, in a Tweet quoted by the Financial Times, October 29, 2018.
"We look like a banana republic to the world."
Former Mexican Labor Minister Javier Lozano, on the flawed referendum held by incoming president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador aimed at killing a $13 billion new airport in Mexico City, as quoted by Televisa and Reuters, October 29, 2018.
"This is a political victory for Trump, who wanted a trophy more than a treaty, and got one."
Arturo Sarukhan, former Mexican ambassador to the United States, on the USMCA, as quoted by the Inter-American Dialogue's daily Latin America Advisor.
“Everyone had to contribute, otherwise you’d be left out.”
Eduardo Eurnekian, founder of the Corporación América conglomerate in Argentina, on the corruption tradition that has plagued his country, as quoted by the Financial Times, October 16, 2018.
"Most of what Donald Trump wants to do with NAFTA is entirely about his own politics — not really about helping any particular sector or workers."
Fordham University adjunct law professor Matt Gold, as quoted by Knowledge@Wharton, September 6, 2018.
"Money doesn’t rain from heaven — consumers are going to pay for that. This is all for the sake of saving 5,000 jobs or 10,000 jobs — that’s about it."
Wharton management professor Mauro Guillen, on the new US-Mexico trade agreement, as quoted by Knowledge@Wharton, September 6, 2018.
"Essentially the agreement combines castor oil with chocolate cake."
Gary Hufbauer, senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, on the US-Mexico agreement to update NAFTA, as quoted by the Inter-American Dialogue's daily Latin America Advisor, August 30, 2018.
"López Obrador would likely leave office before the first shovelful of earth was turned for the new refinery."
George Baker, publisher of Mexico Energy Intelligence in Houston, as quoted by the Inter-American Dialogue's weekly Energy Advisor, August 17, 2018.
"The African proverb ‘when two elephants fight, it is the grass that suffers’ applies very clearly here."
José Guilherme Almeida dos Reis, executive director, and André Soares, consultant on China-LAC trade, both at the Office for Brazil and Suriname at the Inter-American Development Bank, on the impact of the US-China trade war on Brazil, as quoted by the Inter-American Dialogue's daily Latin America Advisor, July 31, 2018.
"We want NAFTA done. To be torturing Mexico in this way, in my opinion, is dead wrong, and it should be fixed."
JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon to CNN Money, July 23, 2018.
“These kind of structural problems are like an anvil tied to your leg, holding you back.”
Aldo Ferrini, chief executive officer of AFP Integra, Peru’s biggest pension-fund manager, on the country's weak political and judicial systems, as quoted by Bloomberg, July 23, 2018.
"I'm not going to get on that plane."
Mexico's president-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on his plans to sell the presidential plane, as quoted by AP, July 11, 2018.
"The general outline provided by Carlos Urzua, Lopez Obrador's choice for finance minister, has been very well accepted by market participants [and has] decreased significantly the risk or perception of a radical shift in the management of the Mexican economy."
RBC Capital Markets analyst Tania Escobedo Jacob, on Mexican president-elect
Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's message to investors through his finance minister appointee, as quoted by Bloomberg, July 6, 2018.
“If he sweeps Congress, it will be ugly.”
Richard Hall, an emerging market debt and currency analyst at asset manager T. Rowe Price, on the leftist Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador winning both Mexico's presidnecy and congress, as quoted by Reuters, June 19, 2018.
"The anxiety in the business community in Mexico and abroad is warranted." Amanda Mattingly, senior director at The Arkin Group in New York, on a likely victory by leftist Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador in next month's presidential elections in Mexico, as quoted by the Inter-American Dialogue's daily Latin America Advisor, June 13, 2018.
“It would be crazy. It would be remembered as the last step for the economic empire to collapse. You cannot isolate yourself.”
Carlos Urzua, Mexico's likely next finance minister if Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador wins the July 1 election, on the US killing NAFTA, as quoted by Reuters, June 6, 2018.
“You have Trump promising major wins on trade negotiations, while an inside look at what’s going on shows they were building the airplane while they were flying it.”
Austin Evers, the executive director at American Oversight, as quoted by The New York Times, June 6, 2018.
“I’m just dumbfounded."
US Representative Jeb Hensarling, Republican of Texas and the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, on the steel and aluminum tariffs imposed by Trump on Mexico, Canada and the European Union, as quoted by The New York Times, June 6, 2018.
“It was a bloodbath,”
Helena Carvalho of Ativa Investimentos, a brokerage in São Paulo, on the fallout after Petrobras CEO Pedro Parente resigned, as quoted by the Financial Times, June 5, 2018.
"America Decclares War on Its Friends."
Headline of New York Times editorial, March 31, 2018.
"Arguing that passenger cars are a national security issue doesn't pass the laugh test. We don't have a shortage; our companies are not currently in trouble; and there are plenty of alternative sources from reliable allied suppliers. Pursuing that case would make a mockery of the provision."
William Reinsch, a former Clinton administration trade official, commenting on Trump's plans to slap 25% tariffs on car imports due to national security concerns, as quoted by the Los Angeles Times, May 23, 2018.
“NAFTA is very difficult. Mexico has been very difficult to deal with. Canada has been very difficult to deal with ... but I will tell you that in the end we win."
U.S. President Donald Trump, quoted by Reuters, May 23, 2018.
"The NAFTA countries are nowhere near close to a deal."
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, as quoted by Reuters, May 17, 2018.
"He can certainly have a weaker fiscal policy, he can certainly slow down energy reform."
Walter Stoeppelwerth, head of research at Balanz Capital, an investment bank in Buenos Aires, pointing out that only 17 years ago, the peso was at par with the dollar, , as quoted by the Financial Times, May 3, 2018.
“There is an inbred paranoia that the currency is going to go haywire at any point in time. Argentines are more sensitive to foreign exchange risk than any other nation on earth except perhaps Venezuela.”
Walter Stoeppelwerth, head of research at Balanz Capital, an investment bank in Buenos Aires, pointing out that only 17 years ago, the peso was at par with the dollar, , as quoted by the Financial Times, May 3, 2018.
“The central bank needs to shock the market and regain their credibility.”
Federico Kaune, head of emerging market debt at UBS Asset Management, on the peso plunge in Argentina, as quoted by the Financial Times, May 3, 2018.
"It makes the Watergate scandal look like a couple of kids playing in a sandbox."
Deltan Dallagnol, lead Car Wash prosecutor in Curitiba, as quoted by the BBC, April 22, 2018.
"The alternative airport location might be considered to be the equivalent of Donald Trump’s wall: the appeal it might have from a populist point of view is more than offset by practical realities."
Michael Fitzgerald, chairman of the Latin America practice at Paul Hastings, on threats by Mexican presidential candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador to cancel current development of Mexico City's new airport, as quoted by Latinvex, April 18, 2018.
"If the President of the United States is indeed the leader of the free world, that person should be able to walk and chew gum at the same time."
US Representative Eliot L. Engel, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, in a statement on April 10, 2018, commenting on President Donald Trump's cancelled attendance at the Summit of the Americas due to the Syrian situation.
“This is a shocking abandonment of U.S. leadership in our own hemisphere.”
Richard Feinberg, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institute and the principal architect of the 1994 Summit of the Americas in Miami, as quoted by The Miami Herald, April 10, 2018.
"Ecuador Wants Less Julian Assange and More Foreign Investors."
Headline in Bloomberg commentary by Mac Margolis, April 5, 2018.
“I think Lula and Dilma are helping us a lot with the marketing of the series."
José Padilha, creator of Netflix series "The Machanism," about the Lava Jato probe, as quoted by The New York Times, April 2, 2018.
"It remains to be seen if God is Brazilian, and with Neymar’s latest injury, predict a Brazil World Cup victory at your own peril. But what does seem to be humming along is Brazil’s oil sector and Petrobras’ recovery."
Jeremy Martin, vice president for energy and sustainability at the Institute of the Americas, as quoted by the Inter-American Dialogue's weekly Latin America Energy Advisor, March 23, 2018.
"The United States is the new Argentina at the G20. It's the skunk at the garden party that disrupts consensus on core issues, trade and climate change among them."
Benjamin Gedan, former South America director on the White House's National Security Council under President Obama, as quoted by CNN, March 19, 2018.
"Corruption is like tango. You need two to dance."
Delia Ferreira, president of Transparency International, at the World Economic Forum on Latin America, as quoted by EFE, March 16, 2018.
"There's no way they can get anything under control in Venezuela unless they dollarize."
Steve Hanke, a professor at Johns Hopkins University who advised the governments of Ecuador and Montenegro when they ditched their currencies for the dollar, as quoted by CNN, March 13, 2018.
"Today, Panama has made us proud."
Orestes Fintiklis, the owner of the Panama hotel who has been fighting a legal battle to oust the Trump Organization's hotel management team, after a court ruled in his favor, as quoted by Reuters, March 5, 2018.
“I don’t think anybody on earth would want to start a refinery in Mexico."
Robert Campbell, head of oil-products research at Energy Aspects Ltd. in New York, commenting on plans by Mexican presidential frontrunner Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador to build new refineries that could cost $6 billion to $10 billion, as quoted by Bloomberg, February 27, 2018.
"There were many accidents on the road to the pension reform and the bill started to get expensive."
Marcos de Barros Lisboa, president of São Paulo’s Insper business school, on the pension reform delay, as quoted by the Financial Times, February 20, 2018.
"NAFTA has allowed U.S. corporations to remain competitive in a globalized world."
Julio Chiu, CEO of US medical device manufacturer Seisa, as quoted by the Houston Chronicle, February 13, 2018.
“We will revise all these contracts, we will not allow the oil, which is owned by the people and the nation, to go back into the hands of foreigners.”
Mexican presidential candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, quoted by Reuters, February 5, 2018.
"He might be starting the race from the back, but his car is much better than the others."
Brazilian political scientist Lucas de Aragão, a partner at Brasilia consultancy Arko Advice, on Geraldo Alckmin's chances ahead of pridential elections in October, as quoted by Reuters, January 31, 2018.
"NAFTA did not happen by accident. In large measure it was the result of the leadership and vision of three great American presidents: Ronald Reagan, George Herbert Walker Bush and Bill Clinton."
Former Canadian prime minister Brian Mulroney in comments to the US Senate, as quoted by The Canadian Press, January 30, 2018.
"We're going to put him in his place."
Mexican leftist presidential candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador talking about US President Donald Trump at a campaign rally in the Gulf of Mexico port of Veracruz, as quoted by Reuters, January 22, 2018.
"NAFTA, NAFTA, NAFTA - its uncertainty hangs over Mexico like a bad hangover."
John Price, Managing Director of Americas Market Intelligence, as quoted by Latinvex, January 17, 2018.
“The state is living on debt. It’s a house of cards that could fall down.”
Alberto Acosta, an economist at the Spurrier Group, a local Ecuadorian consultancy, as quoted by the Financial Times, December 28, 2017.
“They are sitting on top of the biggest oil reserves in the world and they can’t even write a cheque for $21.5m dollars.”
Russ Dallen of boutique investment bank Caracas Capital, on the PDVSA payment delay to China's Sinopec, as quoted by the Financial Times, December 12, 2017.
"Gramercy is an institution that plays dirty and continually threatens the country by using people, paying lobbyists and manipulating media to frustrate our entry into the OECD.
Peruvian Prime Minister Mercedes Araoz, on US hedge fund Gramercy, which filed a $1.6 billion arbitration claim in 2016, which has been rejected by Peru's governments, as quoted by El Comercio, December 5, 2017
"It's Maduro being a clown. This has no credibility."
Venezuelan opposition lawmaker and economist Angel Alvarado on plans by President Nicolas Maduro to launch a digital currency, as quoted by Reuters, December 3, 2017
"Pemex continues to be run more like a ministry than an oil company. The CEO position is like a stopping point to collect a few new bullet points on your CV before moving on to your next ministry. It continues to be a quasi-political job."
Tim Samples, a law professor and Mexican-energy analyst at the University of Georgia in Athens, on the news that Pemex just named its third CEO in two years, as quoted by Bloomberg, November 27, 2017.
“In terms of the automotive sector, the United States´ proposal is insane. You cannot counter-propose such madness.”
A Mexican auto industry representative with knowledge of the NAFTA talks, as quoted by Reuters, November 20, 2017.
"Venezuela's debt default is the Chronicle of a Death Foretold."
Venezuelan economist Moises Naim, as quoted by Portafolio, November 14, 2017.
“During the Argentine crisis, if you gave me the keys to the Argentine Finance Ministry, I could have solved the problem in 60 days. If you gave me the keys to Venezuela’s Finance Ministry, I’d hand them back to you.”
Robert Koenigsberger, who oversees $6 billion as chief investment officer at Greenwich, Connecticut-based Gramercy Funds Management, as quoted by Bloomberg, Nov. 6, 2017.
“There’s something disturbing about the U.S. picking a fight with two of its biggest (export) markets."
Canadian trade lawyer John Weekes, about the Trump Administrations efforts to end NAFTA, as quoted by Forbes, November 2, 2017.
"With a bit more consistency and a bit less variation in national politics, we can return to investment grade somewhat soon."
Brazil Presidential Chief of Staff Eliseu Padilha, as quoted by Reuters, October 26, 2017.
"We expect Argentina to see multiple rating upgrades in the forthcoming years, as the economy normalizes and investment recovers. This is just the beginning." Alberto Bernal, a strategist at XP Securities, on the mid-term election victory of President Mauricio Macri's pro-business government, as quoted by the Financial Times, October 23, 2017.
“Yes we want an agreement, yes we want to find a win-win situation, but this won’t be at the detriment to our national interests.”
Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo to reporters after the latest NAFTA talks ended, as quoted by Bloomberg, October 17, 2017.
"We are all much worse off with a bad agreement than with no (NAFTA)."
Guillermo Vogel, vice president at Tenaris and co-chair of the U.S.-Mexico CEO Conference, as quoted by Reuters, October 11, 2017.
"The damage it causes pales in comparison to the ills it cures."
Marcos Troyjo, director of BRICLab at Columbia University, writing in the Financial Times, August 17, 2017 on the impact from the Lava Jato probe into Petrobras corruption.
"In terms of benefiting the quarter, no new destination has had quite the impact of Cuba. Our voyages to Havana have been a home run."
Norwegian Cruise Lines President and CEO Frank Del Rio, quoted by Skift, August 9, 2017.
"To have countries with their own distinct corruption issues laughing at our current issues—it’s embarrassing.”
Jessica Tillipman, an expert on government ethics and an assistant dean at the George Washington University Law School, explaining a recent anti-corruption training in Washington, DC, to visiting bureaucrats from Latin America, as quoted by Mother Jones, July/August 2017.
"We're delighted to review trade balances provided that we focus on how to improve them by expanding commerce, not by reducing it."
Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo, on NAFTA renegotiations, according to Reuters, July 18, 2017.
“This is the year of the comeback for IPOs in Brazil.”
Joelson Oliveira Sampaio, a finance professor at Fundacao Getulio Vargas, as quoted by Bloomberg, July 10, 2017.
"Is this president trying to impersonate Hugo Chavez?"
CNN’s senior media correspondent Brian Stelter on Reliable Sources, July 2, 2017, commenting on Donald Trump's Tweet with an edited video showing him beating a wrestler with a CNN logo superimposed onto his face.
"Now it's become even more difficult to vote anything. The government will use all its energy to survive."
Luis Antonio Covatti, a lawmaker from the Progressive Party in Brazil's ruling coalition, on corruption charges against President Michel Temer, as quoted by Bloomberg, June 26, 2017.
“House of Cards on acid."
Steve Jacobs, chief executive of the asset management arm of BTG Pactual, on Brazil's political twists and turns, as quoted by the Financial Times, June 18, 2017.
"The reform agenda belongs to the country, not to a president."
José Berenguer, the CEO of JPMorgan Chase & Co's Brazilian unit, on the outlook for reforms despite uncertainty around President Michel Temer, as quoted by Reuters, May 30, 2017.