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Economy of Aruba

Economy - overview:
Tourism is the mainstay of the small, open Aruban economy, with offshore banking and oil refining and storage also important. The rapid growth of the tourism sector over the last decade has resulted in a substantial expansion of other activities. Construction has boomed, with hotel capacity five times the 1985 level. In addition, the reopening of the country's oil refinery in 1993, a major source of employment and foreign exchange earnings, has further spurred growth. Aruba's small labor force and low unemployment rate have led to a large number of unfilled job vacancies, despite sharp rises in wage rates in recent years. The government's goal of balancing the budget within two years will hamper expenditures, as will the decline in stopover tourist arrivals following the September 11 terrorist attacks.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $1.94 billion (2002 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: -1.5% (2002)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $28,000 (2002 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%

Population below poverty line: NA%

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3.2% (2002)

Labor force: 41,501 (1997)

Labor force - by occupation: most employment is in wholesale and retail trade and repair, followed by hotels and restaurants; oil refining

Unemployment rate: 0.6%

revenues: $135.81 million
expenditures: $147 million, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000)

Industries: tourism, transshipment facilities, oil refining

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - production: 531.9 million kWh (2001)

Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 100%
hydro: 0%
other: 0% (2001)
nuclear: 0%

Electricity - consumption: 494.67 million kWh (2001)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2001)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2001)

Agriculture - products: aloes; livestock; fish

Exports: $1.88 billion f.o.b. (including oil reexports) (2002)

Exports - commodities: live animals and animal products, art and collectibles, machinery and electrical equipment, transport equipment

Exports - partners: US 26.9%, Venezuela 20.9%, Netherlands Antilles 19.5%, Netherlands 14.2% (2001)

Imports: $2.21 billion f.o.b. (2002)

Imports - commodities: machinery and electrical equipment, crude oil for refining and reexport, chemicals; foodstuffs

Imports - partners: US 61.8%, Netherlands 11.7%, Venezuela 3.1%, Japan 2.6% (2001)

Debt - external: $285 million (1996)

Economic aid - recipient: $26 million US (1995); note - the Netherlands provided a $127 million aid package to Aruba and Suriname in 1996

Currency: Aruban guilder/florin (AWG)

Currency code: AWG

Exchange rates: Aruban guilders/florins per US dollar - 1.79 (2002), 1.79 (2001), 1.79 (2000), 1.79 (1999), 1.79 (1998)

Fiscal year: calendar year

See also: Aruba