Economy of Guatemala

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Economy of Guatemala

Post  kosovohp on Sun Oct 31, 2010 1:51 am

According to the CIA World Factbook, Guatemala's GDP (PPP) per capita is US$5,000; however, this developing country still faces many social problems and is among the 10 poorest countries in Latin America.[34] The distribution of income remains highly unequal with more than half of the population below the national poverty line[35] and just over 400,000 (3.2%) unemployed. The CIA World Fact Book considers 56.2% of the population of Guatemala to be living in poverty.[36]

Remittances from Guatemalans who fled to the United States during the civil war now constitute the largest single source of foreign income (more than the combined value of exports and tourism).[37]

In recent years the exporter sector of nontraditional products has grown dynamically representing more than 53 percent of global exports. Some of the main products for export are fruits, vegetables, flowers, handicrafts, cloths and others.

Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in purchasing power parity (PPP) in 2006 was estimated at $61.38 billion USD. The service sector is the largest component of GDP at 58.7%, followed by the agriculture sector at 22.1% (2006 est.). The industrial sector represents only 19.1% of GDP (2006 est.). Mines produce gold, silver, zinc, cobalt and nickel.[38] The agricultural sector accounts for about one-fourth of GDP, two-fifths of exports, and half of the labor force. Organic coffee, sugar, textiles, fresh vegetables, and bananas are the country's main exports. Inflation was 5.7% in 2006.

The 1996 peace accords that ended the decades-long Civil War removed a major obstacle to foreign investment. Tourism has become an increasing source of revenue for Guatemala.

In March 2005 Guatemala's congress ratified the Dominican Republic - Central American Free Trade Agreement (DR-CAFTA) between several Central American nations and the United States.[39] Guatemala also has free trade agreements with Taiwan and Colombia.

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