Barbados Economy - 2021


SOURCE: 2021 CIA WORLD FACTBOOK

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Economic overview

Barbados is the wealthiest and one of the most developed countries in the Eastern Caribbean and enjoys one of the highest per capita incomes in the region. Historically, the Barbadian economy was dependent on sugarcane cultivation and related activities. However, in recent years the economy has diversified into light industry and tourism. Offshore finance and information services are important foreign exchange earners, boosted by being in the same time zone as eastern US financial centers and by a relatively highly educated workforce. Following the 2008-09 recession, external vulnerabilities such as fluctuations in international oil prices have hurt economic growth, raised Barbados' already high public debt to GDP ratio - which stood at 105% of GDP in 2016 - and cut into its international reserves.

Real GDP growth rate

-0.2% (2017 est.)

2.3% (2016 est.)

2.2% (2015 est.)

country comparison to the world: 196

Inflation rate (consumer prices)

4.4% (2017 est.)

1.5% (2016 est.)

country comparison to the world: 175

Credit ratings

Moody's rating: Caa1 (2019)

Standard & Poors rating: B- (2019)

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$4.488 billion (2019 est.)

$4.493 billion (2018 est.)

$4.519 billion (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

country comparison to the world: 182

GDP (official exchange rate)

$4.99 billion (2017 est.)

Real GDP per capita

$15,639 (2019 est.)

$15,675 (2018 est.)

$15,789 (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

country comparison to the world: 107

Gross national saving

7.2% of GDP (2017 est.)

11.8% of GDP (2016 est.)

10.8% of GDP (2015 est.)

country comparison to the world: 179

GDP - composition, by sector of origin

agriculture: 1.5% (2017 est.)

industry: 9.8% (2017 est.)

services: 88.7% (2017 est.)

GDP - composition, by end use

household consumption: 84.2% (2017 est.)

government consumption: 13.4% (2017 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 17.6% (2017 est.)

investment in inventories: 0.2% (2017 est.)

exports of goods and services: 31.6% (2017 est.)

imports of goods and services: -47% (2017 est.)

Ease of Doing Business Index scores

Overall score: 57.9 (2020)

Starting a Business score: 86.4 (2020)

Trading score: 62.8 (2020)

Enforcement score: 38.9 (2020)

Agricultural products

sugar cane, poultry, vegetables, milk, eggs, pork, coconuts, pulses nes, sweet potatoes, tropical fruit

Industries

tourism, sugar, light manufacturing, component assembly for export

Industrial production growth rate

2.4% (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 119

Labor force

144,000 (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 175

Labor force - by occupation

agriculture: 10%

industry: 15%

services: 75% (1996 est.)

Unemployment rate

10.1% (2017 est.)

9.9% (2016 est.)

country comparison to the world: 149

Population below poverty line

N/A

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: NA

highest 10%: NA

Budget

revenues: 1.466 billion (2013 est.) (2017 est.)

expenditures: 1.664 billion (2017 est.)

Taxes and other revenues

29.4% (of GDP) (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 82

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)

-4% (of GDP) (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 155

Public debt

157.3% of GDP (2017 est.)

149.1% of GDP (2016 est.)

country comparison to the world: 3

Fiscal year

1 April - 31 March

Current account balance

-$189 million (2017 est.)

-$206 million (2016 est.)

country comparison to the world: 97

Exports

$485.4 million (2017 est.)

$516.9 million (2016 est.)

country comparison to the world: 175

Exports - partners

US 21%, Poland 14%, Jamaica 8%, Guyana 6%,Trinidad and Tobago 6% (2019)

Exports - commodities

rums and other hard liquor, ships, orthopedic appliances, cement, packaged medicines (2019)

Imports

$1.52 billion (2017 est.)

$1.541 billion (2016 est.)

country comparison to the world: 176

Imports - partners

United States 35%, Trinidad and Tobago 14%, China 9%, Netherlands 5% (2019)

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, ships, cars, shipping containers, packaged medicines (2019)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

$264.5 million (31 December 2017 est.)

$341.8 million (31 December 2016 est.)

country comparison to the world: 169

Debt - external

$4.49 billion (2010 est.)

$668 million (2003 est.)

country comparison to the world: 137

Exchange rates

Barbadian dollars (BBD) per US dollar -

2 (2017 est.)

2 (2016 est.)

2 (2015 est.)

2 (2014 est.)

2 (2013 est.)

note: the Barbadian dollar is pegged to the US dollar

NOTE: The information regarding Barbados on this page is re-published from the 2021 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Barbados 2021 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Barbados 2021 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 16 Dec 23, Copyright © 2023 ITA all rights reserved.