From the document:
The present document provides an up-to-date overview of public debt and fiscal space in the region. The main conclusions show that public debt levels are low in Latin America and high in the Caribbean.
Overall, the region has enough fiscal space to apply countercyclical policies and boost production n development and the fiscal management of non-renewable natural resources needs to be modernized. It explains that fiscal policy has a very limited impact on the distribution of disposable income and in a volatile macroeconomic environment, reforms should aim to strengthen personal income tax...
In the wake of the international financial crisis of 2008-2009, the average public debt of the 19 Latin American countries held steady at about 34.4% of GDP in 2014. However, the Dominican Republic, some Central American countries such as Costa Rica and Honduras, as well as Chile, Ecuador and Mexico, recorded an uptrend in their gross public debt as a percentage of GDP.
Among Caribbean countries, the average public-debt-to-GDP ratio was significantly higher, at about 80% in 2014. Distinguishing by economic specialization, Caribbean exporters of services (mainly tourism and financial services) posted a higher average public-debt-to-GDP ratio (88%) than exporters of raw materials (minerals and hydrocarbons) (56.5%), according to 2014 figures. Moreover, the public debt of tourism-reliant countries has risen in the past 15 years, while that of the raw-material exporting economies has reverted, after some fluctuations, towards the levels recorded in the early 2000s.
Comparing data for 2000 with the most recent available shows that only five Caribbean countries —Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Guyana, Saint Kitts and Nevis and Suriname— were able to lower their public-debt-to-GDP ratios in this period.