Costa Rica Economic Snapshot

Economic Survey of Costa Rica (February 2023)

Costa Rica recovered well from the pandemic-induced recession. Sustained and resilient export performance continues to support growth, while consumption is hindered by high inflation and unemployment. The fiscal situation improved but remains challenging, requiring sustained efforts to contain spending and boost public sector efficiency for several years. Maintaining and reinforcing the commitment to foreign direct investment and trade, which has been key to diversify the export basket, and improving the conditions for domestic companies to thrive are key challenges to boost living standards and formal job creation. This would require reducing the regulatory burden, improving the tax mix, fostering competition in key markets and continuing decarbonisation and environment protection efforts. Supporting higher female labour participation and upgrading social protection will help to adapt to ongoing demographic changes and improve the equality of opportunities. Education and training are a high priority for Costa Rica that devotes to them one of the highest spending shares among OECD countries. However, educational outcomes remain poor and firms struggle to fill their vacancies, particularly in technical and scientific positions. Improving efficiency and quality of public spending in education is needed to better support growth and equity.

Executive Summary


Economic Forecast Summary (November 2022)

Economic Outlook Note - Costa Rica

GDP will grow by 2.3% in 2023 and 3.7% in 2024. High inflation and a tight monetary policy stance will hold back private consumption in 2023, and fiscal restraint will contain public spending. Exports will be hampered by weaker global growth in 2023 but gain strength in 2024. Annual inflation peaked at 12% recently but is set to decline to 4.2% in year-average terms by 2024, still above the 3% target.


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Reform Priorities (April 2021)

Going for Growth 2021 - Costa Rica

To attain a strong and inclusive recovery top policy priority should be on boosting formal jobs creation, with reforms ranging from removing obstacles to firm entry and competition, to improving the quality of education and training.

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