WASHINGTON Oct 11 The Colombian economy will
likely gain speed in the second half of the year, but a rapid
increase in borrowing costs in the United States could be a
threat to that recovery, Colombian Finance Minister Mauricio
Cardenas told Reuters on Friday.
Cardenas said Colombia's economy will likely grow at an
annual pace of more than 5 percent in the second half this year
and then stabilize at between 4.5 and 5 percent next year.
However, he warned that a speedy normalization of monetary
conditions in the United States and a slump in oil prices could
risk that recovery.
"How they announce the tapering will be very important to
avoid the volatility that we saw a few months ago," said
Cardenas, voicing the same worries that other emerging-market
officials at the IMF and World Bank annual meeting in
"A soft and gradual (stimulus) withdraw will be very
Colombia like other emerging-market nations saw its currency
tumble after the U.S. Federal Reserve signaled in May that it
was ready to start withdrawing its massive stimulus program
He said his government sees no reasons yet to change its
economic growth forecasts that stand at 4.5 percent this year
and 4.7 percent in 2014.