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Economic Development of Central America Econ. 4200 - Spring 2004 – Dr. Taylor - page 142 / 153

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The Costa Rican-American Chamber of Commerce observed that "Costa Rica, with its tiny $8.6 billion GDP and 3.5 million people, can not afford a government that consistently overspends its budget by 5 percent or more and then sells short-term bonds, mostly to state institutions, to finance the deficit.“

In 1997, there was a vigorous debate over the possible privatization of many state entities in an effort to reduce

the debt quickly.

In 1998, Miguel Angel Rodríguez of the Social Christian Unity Party became president, pledging economic reforms, such as privatization.

Acknowledging that the world had entered a new phase of development. President Rodriguez introduced a new economic program in January 2001. Called Impulse ("Impulse"), the plan, as reported in The Tico Times, noted that for Costa Rica to compete in the new global economy, "knowledge, technology, quality of human resources and the development of telecommunication and transportation infrastructures are fundamental determinants of national prosperity."

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