Belize Economic Forecast

Belize Economic Outlook

September 12, 2018

The economy expanded robustly in the second quarter, with growth accelerating to 5.4% year-on-year (Q1: +1.3% yoy) on broad-based gains. The primary sector rebounded, as banana shipments increased by over a quarter and sugarcane deliveries recovered. However, citrus production fell by over one third and marine production also declined notably. Moreover, the secondary sector grew at a double-digit pace on surging electricity generation. Furthermore, the services sector—which represents more than half of the economy—posted solid growth in the quarter, albeit softer than in Q1. Recent data suggests the economy is performing well in Q3, with merchandise exports rebounding in July on soaring banana and sugar revenue.

Belize Economic Growth

Tourism is expected to be the main driver of growth this year, supported by the ongoing expansion in the U.S. given that approximately two-thirds of tourists to Belize are Americans. Moreover, recovering production in the primary sector should also buttress growth. Met the why particular panelists expect GDP to expand 1.9% in 2018, which is unchanged from last month’s estimate, and 1.9% again in 2019.

Belize Economy Data

20132014201520162017
Population (million)0.40.40.40.40.4
GDP per capita (USD)4,6074,7734,8594,8414,829
GDP (USD bn)1.61.71.81.81.9
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)0.74.03.8-0.51.2
Unemployment Rate14.212.111.211.19.7
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)-1.6-2.4-7.4-3.8-4.1
Public Debt (% of GDP)79.177.180.086.694.9
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %, eop)1.6-0.2-0.61.11.0
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)0.51.2-0.90.71.1
Benchmark Interest Rate (%)11.1211.6611.039.669.34
Current Account (% of GDP)-4.5-7.5-9.7-8.3-7.0
Current Account Balance (USD bn)-0.1-0.1-0.2-0.2-0.1
Trade Balance (USD billion)-0.3-0.3-0.4-0.4-0.4
Exports (USD billion)0.60.60.50.40.5
Imports (USD billion)0.90.91.00.90.8
Exports (annual variation in %)-2.2-3.1-8.7-17.73.3
Imports (annual variation in %)8.65.62.4-9.0-3.3
International Reserves (USD)0.40.50.40.40.3
External Debt (% of GDP)77.575.574.873.9-  

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