Although in Latin America public debt-to-GDP ratios continue to
be generally lower than in other emerging countries, it has nevertheless not been possible to avoid liquidity problems, which some authors attribute to the low level and high volatility of public revenue, the weakness of domestic financial systems, and the mediocre quality of fiscal institutions. This article also emphasizes some exogenous factors, however. The combination of low economic growth rates and devaluations in a context of dollarized liabilities has given rise to a huge "snowball effect", which is what has come to be called "original sin": the impossibility for an emerging country of borrowing abroad in its own currency. Although the effort to control the dynamics of the public debt
will continue to be mainly at the internal level, the medium-term
sustainability of that debt will depend on actions by international financial institutions aimed at improving the public debt conditions of emerging countries.