SANTIAGO, Sept 22 Chile's public spending will
grow by a moderate 4.5 percent next year, according to the
budget bill that the government plans to unveil this month,
Finance Minister Felipe Larrain said in an interview published
in a local newspaper on Sunday.
The planned growth in spending is lower than the 4.8 percent
expansion in the South American country's 2013 budget. The
reduction is in due in part to lower expected prices for copper,
Chile's top export.
"The 2014 budget will have a moderate increase in spending
and will be the most austere in four years," Larrain told
newspaper La Tercera.
Chile is also trying to adjust to a new reality of a more
moderate copper price by boosting other exports and supporting
growth of non-traditional sectors like asset management, Larrain
told Reuters this month.
The 2014 budget will be executed by the candidate who wins
the November presidential election or December run-off. Former
Chilean leader Michelle Bachelet leads the polls.
Larrain told La Tercera he expects the U.S. Federal Reserve
to start cutting its monetary stimulus program "in a few
The Fed defied investor expectations on Wednesday by
postponing the start of the wind-down of its monthly $85 billion
in securities buying, saying it wanted to wait for more evidence
of solid economic growth.
Larrain said the Fed's decision to keep its bond-buying
plans unchanged reflected concern about market reaction to a
reduction rather than fundamental weakness in the U.S. economy.