Belize Economic Forecast

Belize Economic Outlook

October 9, 2018

Following the robust expansion in the second quarter, dynamics in the third quarter appeared to have remained favorable. The services sector was likely supported by lower unemployment and booming tourism. Although merchandise export growth was subdued in August due to weaker banana export revenue, other main exports, such as marine and citrus products, grew healthily. Moreover, August’s rise combined with July’s strong performance suggest the primary sector continued to strengthen in the quarter. On the other hand, import growth soared in August propelled by a sizeable increase of imports to the Commercial Free Zones and stronger imports of machinery and transport.

Belize Economic Growth

The flourishing tourism sector, which is benefiting from solid growth in key trading partners, is expected to continue to drive Belize’s economic growth. Nevertheless, elevated public debt and a wide current account deficit are the main risks to the outlook. FocusEconomics panelists expect GDP to expand 1.9% in 2018 and 1.9% again in 2019, which is unchanged from last month’s estimate.

Belize Economy Data

20132014201520162017
Population (million)0.40.40.40.40.4
GDP per capita (USD)4,6074,7734,8594,8414,829
GDP (USD bn)1.61.71.81.81.9
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)0.74.03.8-0.51.2
Unemployment Rate14.212.110.211.19.7
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)-1.6-2.4-7.4-3.8-4.1
Public Debt (% of GDP)79.177.180.086.694.9
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %, eop)1.6-0.2-0.61.11.0
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)0.51.2-0.90.71.1
Benchmark Interest Rate (%)11.1210.6610.039.669.34
Current Account (% of GDP)-4.5-7.5-9.7-8.3-7.0
Current Account Balance (USD bn)-0.1-0.1-0.2-0.2-0.1
Trade Balance (USD billion)-0.3-0.3-0.4-0.4-0.4
Exports (USD billion)0.60.60.50.40.5
Imports (USD billion)0.90.91.00.90.8
Exports (annual variation in %)-2.2-3.1-8.7-17.73.3
Imports (annual variation in %)8.65.62.4-9.0-3.3
International Reserves (USD)0.40.50.40.40.3
External Debt (% of GDP)77.575.574.873.9-  

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