Sunday, February 25, 2024

Logo Central America Link

Cell phone, yes. Middle class, no.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Latin America in general and especially big countries such as Argentina and Brazil, have a growing middle class, according to a recent World Bank study.

Meanwhile, Central America lags the rest of the hemisphere, as does Mexico, where average economic growth has averaged less than 2 percent a year so far this century.

Almost every Mexican has a cell phone, whereas about 20 years ago only a privileged handful had one, outgoing President Felipe Calderon said recently, by way of showing that his government's policies had improved people's living standards.

But the main reason why many poor people have cell phones, is probably due less to government intervention than to the global technological revolution, which has driven down the price of once-expensive items.

Central Americans and Mexicans today may have a few more gadgets. But not enough has happened in Mexico and the isthmus in recent years, to create a big middle class.