Economy in Trinidad and Tobago

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Economy—overview: Trinidad and Tobago has earned a reputation as an excellent investment site for international businesses. Successful economic reforms were implemented in 1995 and foreign investment and trade are flourishing. Unemployment - a main cause of the country's socio-economic problems—is high but has decreased to its lowest point in five years. The country enjoys a healthy trade surplus yet its heavy dependence on oil and petrochemical prices makes its trade balance vulnerable to sudden shifts. Tourism is a major foreign exchange earner with 260 000 arrivals in 1995 80% from Europe.

GDP: purchasing power parity—$13.2 billion (1996 est.)

GDP—real growth rate: 3.1% (1996 est.)

GDP—per capita: purchasing power parity—$10 400 (1996 est.)

GDP—composition by sector:

agriculture: 2%

industry: 45%

services: 53% (1995 est.)

Inflation rate—consumer price index: 3.4% (1996)

Labor force:

total: 404 500

by occupation: construction and utilities 13% manufacturing mining and quarrying 14% agriculture 11% services 62% (1993 est.)

Unemployment rate: 16.1% (December 1996)

Budget:

revenues: $1.7 billion

expenditures: $1.6 billion including capital expenditures of $243 million (1997 est.)

Industries: petroleum chemicals tourism food processing cement beverage cotton textiles

Industrial production growth rate: 7.5% (1995)

Electricity—capacity: 1.15 million kW (1995)

Electricity—production: 3.9 billion kWh (1995)

Electricity—consumption per capita: 3 068 kWh (1995)

Agriculture—products: cocoa sugarcane rice citrus coffee vegetables; poultry

Exports:

total value: $2.5 billion (f.o.b. 1996)

commodities: petroleum and petroleum products chemicals steel products fertilizer sugar cocoa coffee citrus flowers

partners: US 48% Caricom countries 15% Latin America 9% EU 5% (1994)

Imports:

total value: $2.1 billion (c.i.f. 1996)

commodities: machinery transportation equipment manufactured goods food live animals

partners: US 48% Venezuela 10% UK 8% Germany Canada (1995)

Debt—external: $1.9 billion (1996 est.)

Economic aid:

recipient: ODA $10 million (1993)

Currency: 1 Trinidad and Tobago dollar (TT$) = 100 cents

Exchange rates: Trinidad and Tobago dollars (TT$) per US$1—6.2840 (January 1998) 6.2503 (1997) 6.0051 (1996) 5.9478 (1995) 5.9249 (1994) 5.3511 (1993)

Fiscal year: calendar year

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