The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This study analyzes composition of goods trade in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) along four main dimensions: revealed comparative advantage, product complexity, sophistication, and diversification. After describing some key trade patterns over the last half century, it compares the findings for LAC with other regions. Second, the study investigates how infrastructure quality, education, and tariff levels affect export composition. Third, using an approach based on product proximity, it aims to predict changes in LAC's future composition of exports. The study concludes that policies to upgrade human capital and infrastructure are essential for increasing LAC's export share in high-skill products.