Peru has been one of the fastest growing Latin American economies for the past ten years. Since 2002 the Peruvian economy has grown by an average of 6.4% per year, a trend expected to continue with a projected GDP growth of 6.3% in 2013. Consumption and private investment are the main driving forces of this growth. Projections for 2013 are that investment will grow 8.3% to a value of US$33.5 billion. The Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) set a target of 30% growth in public investment. As the economy has grown, poverty in Peru has steadily decreased. In its November 2012 Peru Handbook, HSBC states that Peru is “the third-fastest growing consumer market globally, and set to be a bigger economy than Chile, Colombia, or even South Africa in the long term”.
The steady economic growth began with the pro-market policies enacted by President Fujimori in the 1990s. All subsequent governments have continued these policies, including the current administration inaugurated in July 2011 for a five-year term.
President Ollanta Humala has pledged to encourage private and public investment in infrastructure projects in transportation, telecommunications, energy, sanitation, airports, and ports. Congruent with his other campaign goals to reduce poverty and narrow the nation’s socioeconomic gap, President Humala has increased social spending and raised taxes on mining companies.
Peru’s currency, the “Nuevo Sol” (Sol), has been the least volatile of all Latin American currencies in the past few years and was the least impacted by the downturn of the U.S. dollar. Since the mid-1990’s, the Sol's exchange rate with the U.S. dollar has fluctuated between 1.25 and 3.55 to US$1. The exchange rate, as of December 2012, was 2.55 Soles per US$1.
The Peruvian Government has encouraged integration with the global economy by signing a number of free trade agreements, including the United States-Peru Trade
Promotion Agreement (PTPA), which entered into force in 2009. In 2012, the U.S. was the second largest destination for Peruvian exports, receiving 13.4%, and the main supplier of goods to Peru with an 18.9% market share. Peru has preferential trade agreements with 49 countries and unions including the U.S., Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay,
Paraguay, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Canada, Chile, China, Mexico, Japan,
Singapore, South Korea, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, Thailand, and
In its Doing Business 2013 publication, the World Bank ranked Peru 43rd among 183 countries surveyed in terms of ease of doing business. The report rates the ease of processes like starting a business, dealing with construction permits, registering 3 properties, and obtaining credit. The full text of the Peru report can be accessed at: