Economy in Puerto Rico

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Economy—overview: Puerto Rico has one of the most dynamic economies in the Caribbean region. A diverse industrial sector has surpassed agriculture as the primary locus of economic activity and income. Encouraged by duty-free access to the US and by tax incentives US firms have invested heavily in Puerto Rico since the 1950s. US minimum wage laws apply. Sugar production has lost out to dairy production and other livestock products as the main source of income in the agricultural sector. Tourism has traditionally been an important source of income for the island with estimated arrivals of nearly 4 million tourists in 1993. The construction sector has been a key factor in recent economic growth.

GDP: purchasing power parity—$32.9 billion (1997 est.)

GDP—real growth rate: 3% (1997 est.)

GDP—per capita: purchasing power parity—$8 600 (1997 est.)

GDP—composition by sector:

agriculture: NA%

industry: NA%

services: NA%

Inflation rate—consumer price index: 5.5% (1997 est.)

Labor force:

total: 1.3 million (1996)

by occupation: government 19% manufacturing 13% trade 17% construction 5% other 32% unemployed 14% (1996)

Unemployment rate: 13% (FY96/97 est.)


revenues: $5.1 billion

expenditures: $5.1 billion including capital expenditures of $NA (FY94/95)

Industries: pharmaceuticals electronics apparel food products; tourism

Industrial production growth rate: 5% (1994 est.)

Electricity—capacity: 4.465 million kW (1995)

Electricity—production: 17.34 billion kWh (1995)

Electricity—consumption per capita: 4 548 kWh (1995)

Agriculture—products: livestock products chickens; sugarcane coffee pineapples plantains bananas


total value: $22.9 billion (f.o.b. 1996)

commodities: pharmaceuticals electronics apparel canned tuna rum beverage concentrates medical equipment

partners: US 88% (1995 est.)


total value: $19.1 billion (c.i.f. 1996)

commodities: chemicals clothing food fish petroleum products

partners: US 62% (1995 est.)

Debt—external: $NA

Economic aid: none

Currency: 1 US dollar (US$) = 100 cents

Exchange rates: US currency is used

Fiscal year: 1 July—30 June

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