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TORINO, Italy — Since 2003, Latin America’s economies have been thriving, with GDP, including estimates for 2006, up by 17 percent — an average annual growth rate of 4.3 percent and a 12 percent increase in per capita GDP. While impressive, this is only the second time in 25 years that Latin America experienced four consecutive years of positive economic growth. Will such good times continue?

This growth has been fueled by a strong boom in commodity prices, including not only oil, gas and coal, but also metals, minerals and agricultural products. Growing demand for raw materials, owing to sharply increased industrial growth in Asia has benefited the terms of trade of many Latin American countries, and this is not expected to end anytime soon.

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