Over the past decade and a half, Peru has become one of the fastest growing, most stable and dynamic economies in Latin America, as a result of a consistent economic policy and fiscal discipline, and by implementing a transparent legal framework to promote private investment, carried out by several governments.
In this period, Peru has also built a solid democracy in the region, and a large consensus among Peruvians on the economic model towards development. Peru holds strong foundations to meet this target as it has one of the lowest inflation rates in the region, a stable exchange rate, robust international reserves, remarkable credit ratings and low risk indicators.
We have diversified our market destinations and connected our vast natural resources to the major world economies, through 19 Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) including the US, China, Japan, Canada, Korea and the EU. Almost 95% of Peruvian foreign trade is covered by FTAs. Peru´s growing middle class has sustained an expansive domestic demand and this outstanding economic growth has enable Peru to be in the lead in poverty reduction across the region, according to the UN Economic Commission for Latin America.
Peru's stance in the global context goes well beyond the economic aspects. Enjoying a strategic position on South America’s central western coast -linking to the Asia Pacific- Peru has continued to reaffirm its leadership in regional integration with the establishment, along with Colombia, Chile and Mexico, of the Pacific Alliance, the most recent and arguably one of the most successful integration initiatives in the region.
As Peru continues to consolidate a strong democracy and a prosperous economy, it is also implementing social policies framed at the UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals Agenda, particularly in education, healthcare, green growth, and access to water and sanitation for all Peruvians.
And while doing so, we aim at improving the quality of our institutions to deliver more effective public policies, in alignment with OECD standards. We are also advancing in this process by successfully implementing a country-program and actively participating in several committees and working groups. Ultimately, our objective is to become -by the year of our bicentennial in 2021- a full member of the OECD.
The United Kingdom is one of the most important economic partners for Peru. It is in fact, the second largest foreign investor in the country, with a significant weight on the mining, telecom, infrastructure, banking, energy, tourism and other services and sectors. We are committed to enhance even further this partnership as we believe there are still plenty of new investment opportunities for British companies.
We are aware that Britain is going through very important moments of change and whatever this times of transition may bring - and while reshaping its relation with Europe - this is also the moment for the UK to expand its scope and deepening its links with emerging markets and trustful partners, like Peru.