This publication provides an assessment of the region's economic performance during the first half of 2003 and of its prospects for the remainder of the year. An analysis is presented of the main aspects of the regional economy, including its external sector, macroeconomic policies, levels of economic activity, inflation, employment, saving and investment. A statistical appendix consisting of 25 tables with data series up to 2002 is also furnished. The document, which is being published simultaneously in Spanish and English, corresponds to the first chapter of the Economic Survey of Latin America and the Caribbean, 2002-2003, issued in Spanish in September and in English later in the year. Wide distribution of this document is intended to serve the purpose previously performed by the Economic Panorama of Latin America, a publication that was issued in September of each year between 1985 and 1996.