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    Burma Economy - 1990

      Overview: Burma is one of the poorest countries in Asia, with a per capita GDP of about $280. The government reports negligible growth for FY88. The nation has been unable to achieve any significant improvement in export earnings because of falling prices for many of its major commodity exports. For rice, traditionally the most important export, the drop in world prices has been accompanied by shrinking markets and a smaller volume of sales. In 1985 teak replaced rice as the largest export and continues to hold this position. The economy is heavily dependent on the agricultural sector, which generates about 40% of GDP and provides employment for more than 65% of the work force.

      GDP: $11.0 billion, per capita $280; real growth rate 0.2% (FY88 est.)

      Inflation rate (consumer prices): 22.6% (FY89 est.)

      Unemployment rate: 10.4% in urban areas (FY87)

      Budget: revenues $4.9 billion; expenditures $5.0 billion, including capital expenditures of $0.7 billion (FY89 est.)

      Exports: $311 million (f.o.b., FY88 est.) commodities--teak, rice, oilseed, metals, rubber, gems; partners--Southeast Asia, India, China, EC, Africa

      Imports: $536 million (c.i.f., FY88 est.) commodities--machinery, transport equipment, chemicals, food products; partners--Japan, EC, CEMA, China, Southeast Asia

      External debt: $5.6 billion (December 1989 est.)

      Industrial production: growth rate - 1.5% (FY88)

      Electricity: 950,000 kW capacity; 2,900 million kWh produced, 70 kWh per capita (1989)

      Industries: agricultural processing; textiles and footwear; wood and wood products; petroleum refining; mining of copper, tin, tungsten, iron; construction materials; pharmaceuticals; fertilizer

      Agriculture: accounts for about 40% of GDP (including fish and forestry); self-sufficient in food; principal crops--paddy rice, corn, oilseed, sugarcane, pulses; world's largest stand of hardwood trees; rice and teak account for 55% of export revenues; 1985 fish catch of 644 million metric tons

      Illicit drugs: world's largest illicit producer of opium poppy and minor producer of cannabis for the international drug trade; opium production is on the increase as growers respond to the collapse of Rangoon's antinarcotic programs

      Aid: US commitments, including Ex-Im (FY70-88), $158 million; Western (non-US) countries, ODA and OOF bilateral commitments (1970-87), $3.8 billion; Communist countries (1970-88), $424 million

      Currency: kyat (plural--kyats); 1 kyat (K) = 100 pyas

      Exchange rates: kyats (K) per US$1--6.5188 (January 1990), 6.7049 (1989), 6.3945 (1988), 6.6535 (1987), 7.3304 (1986), 8.4749 (1985)

      Fiscal year: 1 April-31 March

      NOTE: The information regarding Burma on this page is re-published from the 1990 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Burma Economy 1990 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Burma Economy 1990 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 07-Feb-03
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