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Suriname Economy Profile 2018

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Economy - overviewSuriname’s economy is dominated by the mining industry, with exports of oil and gold accounting for approximately 85% of exports and 27% of government revenues. This makes the economy highly vulnerable to mineral price volatility. The worldwide drop in international commodity prices and the cessation of alumina mining in Suriname significantly reduced government revenue and national income during the past few years. After 99 years of operations, a major US aluminum company recently discontinued its activities in Suriname. Public sector revenues fell, together with exports, international reserves, employment, and private sector investment.

Economic growth declined annually from just under 5% in 2012 to -10.4% in 2016. In January 2011, the government devalued the currency by 20% and raised taxes to reduce the budget deficit. Suriname began instituting macro adjustments between September 2015 and 2016; these included another 20% currency devaluation in November 2015 and foreign currency interventions by the Central Bank until March 2016, after which time the Bank allowed the Surinamese dollar (SRD) to float. By December 2016, the SRD had lost 46% of its value against the dollar. High import price pass-through from depreciation and electricity tariff increases caused inflation to increase 55.5% year-over-year in December 2016.

Suriname's economic prospects for the medium-term will depend on continued commitment to responsible monetary and fiscal policies and on the introduction of structural reforms to liberalize markets and promote competition. The government's over-reliance on revenue from the extractive sector colors Suriname's economic outlook. One credit bureau forecasted that the economy would contract 2% in 2017. Rising international oil prices and higher production by Suriname’s oil company, Staatsolie’s, will lift oil exports. Two new offshore oil exploration wells will draw 100 million dollars in foreign direct investment inflows. Higher gold prices and increased production from the Merian gold mine also will lift exports. However, investment overall is slowing and unemployment is rising, reflecting government spending cuts, weak business confidence, and the completion of large mining infrastructure projects. Fiscal problems, such as a failure to secure sufficient external financing, could result in additional pressure on the exchange rate and inflation.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$7.928 billion (2017 est.)
$8.023 billion (2016 est.)
$8.964 billion (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP (official exchange rate)$3.665 billion (2016 est.)
GDP - real growth rate-1.2% (2017 est.)
-10.5% (2016 est.)
-2.7% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$13,900 (2017 est.)
$14,200 (2016 est.)
$16,100 (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
Gross national saving50.5% of GDP (2017 est.)
57.1% of GDP (2016 est.)
51.6% of GDP (2015 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 32.8%
government consumption: 16.1%
investment in fixed capital: 64.1%
investment in inventories: 26.5%
exports of goods and services: 50.6%
imports of goods and services: -63.7% (2017 est.)
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 11.6%
industry: 31.1%
services: 57.4% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty line70% (2002 est.)
Labor force144,000 (2014 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 11.2%
industry: 19.5%
services: 69.3% (2010)
Unemployment rate9.1% (2017 est.)
11% (2016 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 16.4%
male: 7.8%
female: 30.7% (2014 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Budgetrevenues: $545.7 million
expenditures: $805.5 million (2017 est.)
Taxes and other revenues14.9% of GDP (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-7.1% of GDP (2017 est.)
Public debt64.6% of GDP (2016 est.)
45.7% of GDP (2015 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)22.3% (2017 est.)
55.5% (2016 est.)
Central bank discount rate10% (2013)
9% (2012)
Commercial bank prime lending rate20.5% (31 December 2017 est.)
13.5% (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of narrow money$1.08 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$921.8 million (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of broad money$2.355 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$2.182 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$1.513 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$1.402 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$NA
Agriculture - productsrice, bananas, palm kernels, coconuts, plantains, peanuts; beef, chickens; shrimp; forest products
Industriesbauxite and gold mining, alumina production; oil, lumbering, food processing, fishing
Industrial production growth rate1.5% (2017 est.)
Current Account Balance$344 million (2017 est.)
-$102 million (2016 est.)
Exports$1.976 billion (2017 est.)
$1.449 billion (2016 est.)
Exports - commoditiesalumina, gold, crude oil, lumber, shrimp and fish, rice, bananas
Exports - partnersSwitzerland 28.3%, UAE 27.1%, Belgium 9.1%, Guyana 9%, US 4.7%, Trinidad and Tobago 4.5% (2016)
Imports$1.57 billion (2017 est.)
$1.197 billion (2016 est.)
Imports - commoditiescapital equipment, petroleum, foodstuffs, cotton, consumer goods
Imports - partnersUS 21.2%, Netherlands 10.9%, China 10.5%, Trinidad and Tobago 10.1%, St. Lucia 7% (2016)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$381.1 million (31 December 2016 est.)
$330.2 million (31 December 2015 est.)
Debt - external$1.7 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$1.625 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Exchange ratesSurinamese dollars (SRD) per US dollar -
7.697 (2017 est.)
6.229 (2016 est.)
6.229 (2015 est.)
3.4167 (2014 est.)
3.3 (2013 est.)
Fiscal yearcalendar year

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on January 20, 2018

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