Latin America is lagging in comparison to other areas of the world due to the lack of quality education and technological innovation, warned on Thursday a head of CAF, the Latin American Development Bank.
All our research has led us to detect that Latin America is losing the train of history,”
said CAF representative in Panama, Susana Pinilla, during the presentation of a report on education and work.
Pinilla recalled that in the 1970s, Latin America oriented its economy to the export of raw materials, but that model “no longer works for the XXI century”, so she proposed replacing it with another that gives “added value to our production and that depends on competitiveness.”
The woman believes that education and training for workers are key to attract investment and new technologies.
Among the causes of this lack of preparation are poverty, which leads children to go to school poorly fed, not being educated by their parents or dropping out of school, as well as inequality to access quality education, according to experts.
According to the CAF, in Latin America 11% of children work and 56% of them do not have books at home.
Fernando Álvarez, a CAF research economist, says there are important gaps in the education level of children from poor and wealthy families in the region, and although there has been “unquestionable progress”, there is a debt in quality and access to education.
He added that the region has “traits of underdevelopment”, such as high informality and inequality at work and low productivity.
We have had a series of conditions that delayed Latin America versus other countries, mainly the Asians, who did invest a lot of time in developing their educational and training capacities,”
The CAF, based in Caracas, is a development bank founded in 1970 and made up of 19 countries, in addition to 13 private banks. It was originally called the Andean Development Corporation, but changed its name to the Latin American Development Bank, although it still uses the acronym CAF.