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El Salvador Economy Profile 2017

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Economy - overviewThe smallest country in Central America geographically, El Salvador has the fourth largest economy in the region. With the global recession, real GDP contracted in 2009 and economic growth has since remained low, averaging less than 2% from 2010 to 2014, but recovered somewhat in 2015-16 with an average annual growth rate of 2.4%. Remittances accounted for approximately 17.1% of GDP in 2016 and were received by about a third of all households.

In 2006, El Salvador was the first country to ratify the Dominican Republic-Central American Free Trade Agreement, which has bolstered the export of processed foods, sugar, and ethanol, and supported investment in the apparel sector amid increased Asian competition. In September 2015, El Salvador kicked off a five-year $277 million second compact with the Millennium Challenge Corporation - a US Government agency aimed at stimulating economic growth and reducing poverty - to improve El Salvador's competitiveness and productivity in international markets..

The Salvadoran Government maintained fiscal discipline during post-war reconstruction and rebuilding following earthquakes in 2001 and hurricanes in 1998 and 2005, but El Salvador's public debt, estimated at 61.1% of GDP in 2016, has been growing over the last several years. Total external debt was nearly 60% of GDP in 2016.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$54.79 billion (2016 est.)
$53.5 billion (2015 est.)
$52.22 billion (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
GDP (official exchange rate)$26.61 billion (2016 est.)
GDP - real growth rate2.4% (2016 est.)
2.5% (2015 est.)
1.4% (2014 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$8,900 (2016 est.)
$8,700 (2015 est.)
$8,600 (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
Gross national saving12.2% of GDP (2016 est.)
10.4% of GDP (2015 est.)
8.4% of GDP (2014 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 91.5%
government consumption: 12.3%
investment in fixed capital: 14.4%
investment in inventories: -0.1%
exports of goods and services: 26.2%
imports of goods and services: -44.3% (2016 est.)
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 10.6%
industry: 25.3%
services: 64.1% (2016 est.)
Population below poverty line34.9% (2015 est.)
Labor force2.788 million (2016 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 21%
industry: 20%
services: 58% (2011 est.)
Unemployment rate5.5% (2016 est.)
5.5% (2015 est.)
note: data are official rates; but underemployment is high
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 12.4%
male: 11.8%
female: 13.6% (2013 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 2.2%
highest 10%: 32.3% (2014 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index37 (2015 est.)
38 (2014)
Budgetrevenues: $5.443 billion
expenditures: $6.318 billion (2016 est.)
Taxes and other revenues20.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-3.3% of GDP (2016 est.)
Public debt64.9% of GDP (2016 est.)
65.4% of GDP (2015 est.)
note: El Salvador's total public debt includes non-financial public sector debt, financial public sector debt, and central bank debt
Inflation rate (consumer prices)-0.9% (2016 est.)
1% (2015 est.)
Commercial bank prime lending rate6.5% (23 December 2016 est.)
6.72% (25 December 2015 est.)
Stock of narrow money$3.129 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$3.253 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of broad money$11.97 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$11.61 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$11.39 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$10.85 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$4.4 billion (December 2016 est.)
$3.816 billion (December 2015 est.)
$3.535 billion (December 2014 est.)
Agriculture - productscoffee, sugar, corn, rice, beans, oilseed, cotton, sorghum; beef, dairy products
Industriesfood processing, beverages, petroleum, chemicals, fertilizer, textiles, furniture, light metals
Industrial production growth rate2.4% (2016 est.)
Current Account Balance-$669 million (2016 est.)
-$920 million (2015 est.)
Exports$5.335 billion (2016 est.)
$5.485 billion (2015 est.)
Exports - commoditiesoffshore assembly exports, coffee, sugar, textiles and apparel, ethanol, chemicals, electricity, iron and steel manufactures
Exports - partnersUS 47.1%, Honduras 13.9%, Guatemala 13.6%, Nicaragua 6.6%, Costa Rica 4.5% (2015)
Imports$9.855 billion (2016 est.)
$10.42 billion (2015 est.)
Imports - commoditiesraw materials, consumer goods, capital goods, fuels, foodstuffs, petroleum, electricity
Imports - partnersUS 39.4%, Guatemala 9.6%, China 8.1%, Mexico 7.4%, Honduras 5.7% (2015)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$3.238 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$2.787 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Debt - external$16.32 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$15.51 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home$10.56 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$9.158 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad$811.8 million (31 December 2016 est.)
$951.8 million (31 December 2015 est.)
Exchange ratesnote: the US dollar is used as a medium of exchange and circulates freely in the economy
Fiscal yearcalendar year

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on July 9, 2017

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