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Economic outlook for Barbados worst in Caribbean _ IMF report

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The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has crunched its latest numbers and concluded that Barbados will have the worst economic performance among 12 Caribbean countries this year.

And as far as the IMF is concerned, 2016 will not be much better, with only St Lucia expected to keep Barbados’ company at the bottom of the growth projections list.{{more}}

Three weeks ago the Barbados Central Bank issued its first quarter review, in which Governor Dr DeLisle Worrell predicted that the economy would grow by between 1.5 and two per cent this year, “principally on the strength of tourism activity and further private sector investment of approximately $700 million.”

However, in its new Regional Economic Outlook for the Western Hemisphere, the IMF differed. It said Barbados’ economy would grow by no more than 0.8 per cent this year, and 1.4 per cent next year, as overall economic growth in Latin America and the Caribbean regressed.

This year, the IMF expects Dominican Republic (5.1 per cent) to grow its gross domestic product the most. It will be followed by St Kitts and Nevis (3.5 per cent), Haiti (3.3 per cent), Dominica (2.4 per cent), The Bahamas (2.3 per cent), St Vincent and the Grenadines (2.1 per cent), Antigua and Barbuda (1.9 per cent), St Lucia (1.8 per cent), Jamaica (1.7 per cent), Grenada (1.5 per cent), Trinidad and Tobago (1.2 per cent), and Barbados (0.8 per cent).

The IMF’s 2016 forecast also had the Dominican Republic (4.5 per cent) at the top of the group, followed by Haiti (3.8 per cent), St Vincent and the Grenadines (3.1 per cent), St Kitts and Nevis (3.0 per cent), Dominica (2.9 per cent), The Bahamas (2.8 per cent), Antigua and Barbuda, 2.3 per cent, Jamaica (2.2 per cent), Grenada (two per cent), Trinidad and Tobago (1.5 per cent), St Lucia (1.4 per cent) and Barbados (1.4 per cent).

Economic growth in the overall Latin America and the Caribbean region is expected to “drop below one per cent” this year and recovery will be “modest” in 2016, the IMF added. Regional growth was 1.3 per cent last year. (SC- Barbados Nation)

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