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Solomon Islands Economy

    Economy—overview: The bulk of the population depend on agriculture, fishing, and forestry for at least part of their livelihood. Most manufactured goods and petroleum products must be imported. The islands are rich in undeveloped mineral resources such as lead, zinc, nickel, and gold. Economic troubles in Southeast Asia led to a steep downturn in the timber industry, and economic output declined by about 10% in 1998. The government instituted public service pay cuts and other retrenchments.

    GDP: purchasing power parity—$1.15 billion (1998 est.)

    GDP—real growth rate: -10% (1998 est.)

    GDP—per capita: purchasing power parity—$2,600 (1998 est.)

    GDP—composition by sector:
    agriculture: NA%
    industry: NA%
    services: NA%

    Population below poverty line: NA%

    Household income or consumption by percentage share:
    lowest 10%: NA%
    highest 10%: NA%

    Inflation rate (consumer prices): 11.8% (1996)

    Labor force: 26,842

    Labor force—by occupation: services 41.5%, agriculture, forestry, and fishing 23.7%, commerce, transport, and finance 21.7%, construction, manufacturing, and mining 13.1% (1992 est.)

    Unemployment rate: NA%

    Budget:
    revenues: $147 million
    expenditures: $168 million, including capital expenditures of $NA (1997 est.)

    Industries: copra, fish (tuna)

    Industrial production growth rate: NA%

    Electricity—production: 30 million kWh (1996)

    Electricity—production by source:
    fossil fuel: 100%
    hydro: 0%
    nuclear: 0%
    other: 0% (1996)

    Electricity—consumption: 30 million kWh (1996)

    Electricity—exports: 0 kWh (1996)

    Electricity—imports: 0 kWh (1996)

    Agriculture—products: cocoa, beans, coconuts, palm kernels, rice, potatoes, vegetables, fruit; cattle, pigs; timber; fish

    Exports: $184 million (f.o.b., 1996)

    Exports—commodities: timber, fish, palm oil, cocoa, copra

    Exports—partners: Japan 50%, Spain 16%, UK, Thailand 5% (1996)

    Imports: $151 million (c.i.f., 1996 est.)

    Imports—commodities: plant and equipment, manufactured goods, food and live animals, fuel

    Imports—partners: Australia 42%, Japan 10%, Singapore 9%, NZ 8%, US 5% (1996)

    Debt—external: $145 million (1996 est.)

    Economic aid—recipient: $46.4 million (1995)

    Currency: 1 Solomon Islands dollar (SI$) = 100 cents

    Exchange rates: Solomon Islands dollars (SI$) per US$1—4.9334 (January 1999), 4.8156 (1998), 3.5664 (1997), 3.4059 (1995), 3.2914 (1994)

    Fiscal year: calendar year

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Revised 1-Mar-99
Copyright © 1999 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)