[Caribbean Literature]

Economy of The British Virgin Islands

source: CIA World Fact Book 1997

Economy - overview: The economy, one of the most prosperous in the Caribbean, is highly dependent on tourism, which generates an estimated 45% of the national income. In 1985, the government began offering offshore registration to companies wishing to incorporate in the islands, and incorporation fees now generate substantial revenues. 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 traditional close links with the US Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Islands have used the dollar as their currency since 1959.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $135 million (1995 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 4% (1995 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $10,200 (1995 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:

Inflation rate - consumer price index: 2.5% (1990 est.)

Labor force:

Unemployment rate: 3% (1995)


Industries: tourism, light industry, construction, rum, concrete block, offshore financial center

Industrial production growth rate: 4% (1985)

Agriculture - products: fruits, vegetables; livestock, poultry; fish

Exports: Imports:

Debt - external: $4.5 million (1985)

Economic aid: $NA

Currency: 1 United States dollar (US$) = 100 cents

Exchange rates: US currency is used

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

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