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Antigua and Barbuda Economy

    Economy—overview: Tourism continues to be by far the dominant activity in the economy accounting directly or indirectly for more than half of GDP. Increased tourist arrivals have helped spur growth in the construction and transport sectors. The dual island nation's agricultural production is mainly directed to the domestic market; the sector is constrained by the limited water supply and labor shortages that reflect the pull of higher wages in tourism and construction. Manufacturing comprises enclave-type assembly for export with major products being bedding, handicrafts, and electronic components. Prospects for economic growth in the medium term will continue to depend on income growth in the industrialized world, especially in the US, which accounts for about half of all tourist arrivals.

    GDP: purchasing power parity—$503 million (1998 est.)

    GDP—real growth rate: 6% (1998 est.)

    GDP—per capita: purchasing power parity—$7,900 (1998 est.)

    GDP—composition by sector:
    agriculture: 4%
    industry: 12.5%
    services: 83.5% (1996 est.)

    Population below poverty line: NA%

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

    Inflation rate (consumer prices): -1.1% (1997)

    Labor force: 30,000

    Labor force—by occupation: commerce and services 82%, agriculture 11%, industry 7% (1983)

    Unemployment rate: 9% (1997 est.)

    Budget:
    revenues: $122.6 million
    expenditures: $141.2 million, including capital expenditures of $17.3 million (1997 est.)

    Industries: tourism, construction, light manufacturing (clothing, alcohol, household appliances)

    Industrial production growth rate: 6% (1997 est.)

    Electricity—production: 95 million kWh (1996)

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

    Electricity—consumption: 95 million kWh (1996)

    Electricity—exports: 0 kWh (1996)

    Electricity—imports: 0 kWh (1996)

    Agriculture—products: cotton, fruits, vegetables, bananas, coconuts, cucumbers, mangoes, sugarcane; livestock

    Exports: $37.8 million (1997)

    Exports—commodities: petroleum products 48%, manufactures 23%, food and live animals 4%, machinery and transport equipment 17%

    Exports—partners: OECS 26%, Barbados 15%, Guyana 4%, Trinidad and Tobago 2%, US 0.3%

    Imports: $325.5 million (1997)

    Imports—commodities: food and live animals, machinery and transport equipment, manufactures, chemicals, oil

    Imports—partners: US 27%, UK 16%, Canada 4%, OECS 3%, other 50%

    Debt—external: $240 million (1997 est.)

    Economic aid—recipient: $2.3 million (1995)

    Currency: 1 East Caribbean dollar (EC$) = 100 cents

    Exchange rates: East Caribbean dollars (EC$) per US$1—2.7000 (fixed rate since 1976)

    Fiscal year: 1 April—31 March

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