Flag of Barbados

Barbados Economy Profile 2014

Home > Factbook > Countries > Barbados

Economy - overviewBarbados is the wealthiest and most developed country in the Eastern Caribbean and enjoys one of the highest per capita incomes in Latin America. 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 with about four-fifths of GDP and of exports being attributed to services. Offshore finance and information services are important foreign exchange earners and thrive from having the same time zone as eastern US financial centers and a relatively highly educated workforce. Barbados' tourism, financial services, and construction industries have been hard hit since the onset of the global economic crisis in 2008. Barbados' public debt-to-GDP ratio rose from 56% in 2008 to 90.5% in 2013. Growth prospects are limited because of a weak tourism outlook and planned austerity measures.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$7.004 billion (2013 est.)
$7.056 billion (2012 est.)
$7.056 billion (2011 est.)
note: data are in 2013 US dollars
GDP (official exchange rate)$4.262 billion (2013 est.)
GDP - real growth rate-0.8% (2013 est.)
0% (2012 est.)
0.8% (2011 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$25,100 (2013 est.)
$25,400 (2012 est.)
$25,400 (2011 est.)
note: data are in 2013 US dollars
Gross national saving9% of GDP (2013 est.)
9.4% of GDP (2012 est.)
3.4% of GDP (2011 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 81.7%
government consumption: 15.4%
investment in fixed capital: 14.3%
investment in inventories: 1.9%
exports of goods and services: 40.5%
imports of goods and services: -53.8%
(2013 est.)
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 3.1%
industry: 13.9%
services: 83% (2013 est.)
Population below poverty lineNA%
Labor force141,800 (2013 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 10%
industry: 15%
services: 75% (1996 est.)
Unemployment rate11.4% (2013 est.)
11.6% (2012 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 26.2%
male: 24.1%
female: 28.7% (2003)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Budgetrevenues: $1.15 billion (2013 est.)
expenditures: $1.45 billion (2013 est.)
Taxes and other revenues27% of GDP (2013 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-7% of GDP (2013 est.)
Public debt90.5% of GDP (2013 est.)
85.6% of GDP (2012 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)2.1% (2013 est.)
4.8% (2012 est.)
Central bank discount rate7% (31 December 2010 est.)
7% (31 December 2009 est.)
Commercial bank prime lending rate8.5% (31 December 2013 est.)
8.7% (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of narrow money$1.749 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$1.711 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of broad money$4.229 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$4.198 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$5.035 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$4.874 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$4.495 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
$NA (31 December 2011)
$4.366 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
Agriculture - productssugarcane, vegetables, cotton
Industriestourism, sugar, light manufacturing, component assembly for export
Industrial production growth rate-0.7% (2013 est.)
Current Account Balance-$276.6 million (2013 est.)
-$204.4 million (2012 est.)
Exports$1.051 billion (2013 est.)
$1.039 billion (2012 est.)
Exports - commoditiesmanufactures, sugar and molasses, rum, other foods and beverages, chemicals, electrical components
Exports - partnersTrinidad and Tobago 20.8%, US 11.9%, St. Lucia 9.7%, St. Vincent and the Grenadines 6%, Jamaica 5.6%, Antigua and Barbuda 4.9%, St. Kitts and Nevis 4.6%, UK 4.4% (2012)
Imports$1.674 billion (2013 est.)
$1.584 billion (2012 est.)
Imports - commoditiesconsumer goods, machinery, foodstuffs, construction materials, chemicals, fuel, electrical components
Imports - partnersTrinidad and Tobago 35.9%, US 26.9%, China 5.6% (2012)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$712.6 million (31 December 2013 est.)
$839.7 million (31 December 2012 est.)
Debt - external$4.49 billion (2010 est.)
$668 million (2003 est.)
Exchange ratesBarbadian dollars (BBD) per US dollar -
2 (2013 est.)
2 (2012 est.)
2 (2010 est.)
note: the Barbadian dollar is pegged to the US dollar
Fiscal year1 April - 31 March

Source: CIA World Factbook
Unless otherwise noted, information in this page is accurate as of August 23, 2014