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Guinea-Bissau Economy 2008

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Economy - overview:
One of the 10 poorest countries in the world, Guinea-Bissau depends mainly on farming and fishing. Cashew crops have increased remarkably in recent years, and the country now ranks sixth in cashew production. Guinea-Bissau exports fish and seafood along with small amounts of peanuts, palm kernels, and timber. Rice is the major crop and staple food. However, intermittent fighting between Senegalese-backed government troops and a military junta destroyed much of the country's infrastructure and caused widespread damage to the economy in 1998; the civil war led to a 28% drop in GDP that year, with partial recovery in 1999-2002. Before the war, trade reform and price liberalization were the most successful part of the country's structural adjustment program under IMF sponsorship. The tightening of monetary policy and the development of the private sector had also begun to reinvigorate the economy. Because of high costs, the development of petroleum, phosphate, and other mineral resources is not a near-term prospect. However, offshore oil prospecting has begun and could lead to much-needed revenue in the long run. The inequality of income distribution is one of the most extreme in the world. The government and international donors continue to work out plans to forward economic development from a lamentably low base. In December 2003, the World Bank, IMF, and UNDP were forced to step in to provide emergency budgetary support in the amount of $107 million for 2004, representing over 80% of the total national budget. Government drift and indecision, however, resulted in continued low growth in 2002-06. Higher raw material prices boosted growth to 3.7% in 2007.

GDP (purchasing power parity):
$901.2 million (2007 est.)

GDP (official exchange rate):
$310.1 million (2007 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:
3.7% (2007 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP):
$600 (2007 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 62%
industry: 12%
services: 26% (1999 est.)

Labor force:
480,000 (1999)

Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 82%
industry and services: 18% (2000 est.)

Unemployment rate:

Population below poverty line:

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 0.5%
highest 10%: 42.4% (1991)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
4% (2002 est.)

revenues: $NA
expenditures: $NA

Agriculture - products:
rice, corn, beans, cassava (tapioca), cashew nuts, peanuts, palm kernels, cotton; timber; fish

agricultural products processing, beer, soft drinks

Industrial production growth rate:
4.7% (2003 est.)

Electricity - production:
60 million kWh (2005)

Electricity - consumption:
55.8 million kWh (2005)

Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2005)

Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2005)

Oil - production:
0 bbl/day (2005 est.)

Oil - consumption:
2,480 bbl/day (2005 est.)

Oil - exports:
0 bbl/day (2004)

Oil - imports:
2,463 bbl/day (2004)

Oil - proved reserves:
0 bbl (1 January 2006 est.)

natural gas - production:
0 cu m (2005 est.)

natural gas - consumption:
0 cu m (2005 est.)

natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2005 est.)

natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2005)

natural gas - proved reserves:
0 cu m (1 January 2006 est.)

$133 million f.o.b. (2006)

Exports - commodities:
cashew nuts, shrimp, peanuts, palm kernels, sawn lumber

Exports - partners:
India 76.1%, Nigeria 18.1%, Italy 1.4% (2006)

$200 million f.o.b. (2006)

Imports - partners:
Portugal 18.8%, Senegal 16.3%, Italy 13%, Pakistan 4.5% (2006)

Economic aid - recipient:
$79.12 million (2005)

Debt - external:
$941.5 million (2000 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:

Currency (code):
Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XOF); note - responsible authority is the Central Bank of the West African States

Exchange rates:
Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XOF) per US dollar - 493.51 (2007), 522.59 (2006), 527.47 (2005), 528.29 (2004), 581.2 (2003)
note: since 1 January 1999, the XOF franc has been pegged to the euro at a rate of 655.957 XOF francs per euro

Fiscal year:
calendar year

NOTE: The information regarding Guinea-Bissau on this page is re-published from the 2008 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Guinea-Bissau Economy 2008 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Guinea-Bissau Economy 2008 should be addressed to the CIA.

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This page was last modified 24-May-08
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