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    Marshall Islands Economy - 2003

      Economy - overview: US Government assistance is the mainstay of this tiny island economy. Agricultural production is primarily subsistence and is concentrated on small farms; the most important commercial crops are coconuts and breadfruit. Small-scale industry is limited to handicrafts, tuna processing, and copra. The tourist industry, now a small source of foreign exchange employing less than 10% of the labor force, remains the best hope for future added income. The islands have few natural resources, and imports far exceed exports. Under the terms of the Compact of Free Association, the US has provided more than $1 billion in aid since 1986. Negotiations have continued for an extended agreement. Government downsizing, drought, a drop in construction, the decline in tourism and foreign investment due to the Asian financial difficulties, and less income from the renewal of fishing vessel licenses have held GDP growth to an average of 1% over the past decade.

      GDP: purchasing power parity - $115 million (2001 est.)

      GDP - real growth rate: 2% (2001 est.)

      GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,600 (2001 est.)

      GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 14%
      industry: 16%
      services: 70% (2000 est.)

      Population below poverty line: NA%

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

      Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2% (2001 est.)

      Labor force: 28,698

      Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 21.4%, industry 20.9%, services 57.7%

      Unemployment rate: 30.9% (1999 est.)

      Budget: revenues: $42 million
      expenditures: $40 million, including capital expenditures of $NA (1999)

      Industries: copra, fish, tourism, craft items from shell, wood, and pearls

      Industrial production growth rate: NA%

      Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 99%
      hydro: 0%
      nuclear: 0%
      other: 1% (solar)

      Agriculture - products: coconuts, tomatoes, melons, taro, breadfruit, fruits; pigs, chickens

      Exports: $9 million f.o.b. (2000)

      Exports - commodities: copra cake, coconut oil, handicrafts, fish

      Exports - partners: US, Japan, Australia, China (2000)

      Imports: $54 million f.o.b. (2000)

      Imports - commodities: foodstuffs, machinery and equipment, fuels, beverages and tobacco

      Imports - partners: US, Japan, Australia, NZ, Singapore, Fiji, China, Philippines (2000)

      Debt - external: $86.5 million (FY99/00 est.)

      Economic aid - recipient: more than $1 billion from the US, 1986-2002

      Currency: US dollar (USD)

      Currency code: USD

      Exchange rates: the US dollar is the legal tender

      Fiscal year: 1 October - 30 September

      NOTE: The information regarding Marshall Islands on this page is re-published from the 2003 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Guinea Geography 2003 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Marshall Islands Economy 2003 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 20-Sep-03
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