Beginning with the administration of President Morales in 2006, Bolivia has implemented a new economic, social, communitarian and productive model in which the public sector actively participates in boosting economic growth by channeling investment and creating state enterprises. Despite the global financial crisis that began in 2008, the country generally benefited from favorable economic conditions between 2006 and 2012. Bolivia economy and public finances strengthened significantly during this period as a result of real GDP growth, higher exports, higher hydrocarbon production, and fiscal austerity measures such as lowering the salaries of Government employees, including the President, and increasing financial transparency through the elimination of reserve funds for public authorities.
Real GDP grew by 5.2% in 2012, compared to 5.2% and 4.1% in 2011 and 2010, respectively, which was primarily the result of higher hydrocarbons production and manufacturing. Of the 5.2% growth in real GDP in 2012, 4.3% was due to domestic demand growth and 0.9% was due to external demand growth, compared to 4.6% and 0.6%, respectively, in 2011. The increase in domestic demand was primarily the result of increased household consumption and public and private investment.
As of December 31, 2012, Bolivia total outstanding public debt was U.S.$8,952.5 million, an increase of 3.8% as compared to U.S.$8,625.1 million as of December 31, 2011.
Gross public debt (domestic and external) has fallen significantly over the last decade, benefiting from the Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative program (the “MDRI program”) and fiscal surpluses. The
portfolio composition of Bolivia total public debt has also changed significantly since 2000. In 2000, total public debt balance was composed of 20% domestic debt and 80% external debt. This was substantially reversed in 2012 as domestic debt increased to 52.2% of total public debt and external debt decreased to 47.8% of total public debt, which was primarily the result of policies implemented by the Government, various external debt relief programs, excess liquidity in the domestic financial market and increased confidence by the domestic financial market in our management of fiscal accounts.