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British Virgin Islands Economy
Economy - overview:
The economy, one of the most stable and prosperous in the Caribbean, is highly dependent on tourism, generating an estimated 45% of the national income. An estimated 350,000 tourists, mainly from the US, visited the islands in 1998. Tourism suffered in 2002 because of the lackluster US economy. In the mid-1980s, the government began offering offshore registration to companies wishing to incorporate in the islands, and incorporation fees now generate substantial revenues. Roughly 400,000 companies were on the offshore registry by yearend 2000. The adoption of a comprehensive insurance law in late 1994, which provides a blanket of confidentiality with regulated statutory gateways for investigation of criminal offenses, is expected to make the British Virgin Islands even more attractive to international business. Livestock raising is the most important agricultural activity; poor soils limit the islands' ability to meet domestic food requirements. Because of traditionally close links with the US Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Islands has used the dollar as its currency since 1959.
purchasing power parity - $320 million (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
1% (2002 est.)
GDP - per capita:
purchasing power parity - $16,000 (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 1.8%
industry: 6.2%
services: 92% (1996 est.)
Population below poverty line:
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA
highest 10%: NA
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
2.5% (2002)
Labor force:
4,911 (1980)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture NA, industry NA, services NA
Unemployment rate:
3% (1995)
revenues: $121.5 million
expenditures: $115.5 million, including capital expenditures of NA (1997)
tourism, light industry, construction, rum, concrete block, offshore financial center
Industrial production growth rate:
Electricity - production:
38.1 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 100%
hydro: 0%
other: 0% (2001)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption:
35.43 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2001)
Oil - production:
0 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - consumption:
420 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - exports:
NA (2001)
Oil - imports:
NA (2001)
Agriculture - products:
fruits, vegetables; livestock, poultry; fish
$25.3 million (2002)
Exports - commodities:
rum, fresh fish, fruits, animals; gravel, sand
Exports - partners:
Virgin Islands (US), Puerto Rico, US
$187 million (2002 est.)
Imports - commodities:
building materials, automobiles, foodstuffs, machinery
Imports - partners:
Virgin Islands (US), Puerto Rico, US
Debt - external:
$36.1 million (1997)
Economic aid - recipient:
US dollar (USD)
Currency code:
Exchange rates:
the US dollar is used
Fiscal year:
1 April - 31 March
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