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Bahamas Bahamas

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Bahamas – Quick View
ECR score59.16 (Mar 2011)
ECR rank49 (Mar 2011)
Economic
GDP (2009)USD 7.25 billion
GNI per capita PPP (2010)USD 25,201
FDI inflow (2009)USD 730 million
Inflation (July 2010)0.84%
Central bank assets (September 2010)USD 1,068.93 million
Unemployment rate (2009)14.2%
Government deficit (Q1 2010-11)USD 110.95 million
Tax revenue (Q1 2010-11)USD 240 million
Political
Government typeParliamentary Democracy
Recent political crisisNA
Economic freedom score (2011)46th
Freedom of information score (2010)NA
Corruption perception index (2010)NA
Structural
Birth rate17 per '000
Population balanceUnder 14 - 25.5%
Population balanceOver 60 - 11.1%
Life expectancy yearsMales - 76.2 years
Life expectancy yearsFemales - 70.6 years
Mortality rate5.8 per '000
Literacy rate95%
Internet access42.3%

[Top] Economic Overview

The Bahamas has a stable economy. The economy is primarily dependent on the tourism industry and offshore banking. The tourism industry contributes about 60% to the country’s GDP.

The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) reflected a growth from BSD 6.56 billion in 2005 to BSD 7.38 billion in 2009. The country’s GDP is projected to reach BSD 8.43 billion in 2013.

 

Bahamas GDP and GDP Growth Rate

(p) = IMF projections

(Source: bahamas.gov.bs)

The GDP growth rate has declined from 9% in 2005 to -1% in 2008. However, in 2009, the GDP growth rate increased to 0.9% and is projected to increase in the next four fiscals.

Gross National Income (GNI) per capita (PPP)

The GNI per capita at PPP declined from USD 26,163 in 2005 to USD 25,201 in 2010.

 

Bahamas GNI per capita, PPP (USD)

(Source: UNDP)

Income Tax

There is no tax on personal income, corporate tax or value added tax.

(Source: heritage.org)

Inflation Rate

The inflation rate in the Bahamas in July 2010 was 0.84%. The inflation rate was at its maximum of 4.5% in 2008 which declined to 2.1% in 2009.

(Source: Central Bank, World Bank)

 


Bahamas Inflation Rate

(Source: World Bank)

FDI Inflow

 

Bahamas FDI (Foreign Direct Investment)

(Source: bahamas.gov.bs)

The FDI inflow was on a steady rise until 2008. The FDI inflow declined from BSD 1,010 million in 2008 to BSD 743 million in 2009.

Banking sector assets

The table below displays the assets of the Central Bank of Bahamas.

Currency Unit: Bahamian Dollar (BSD)

 

Assets (BSD ’000)

2010 (till September)

2009

2008

Balance with Bankers

157,252

270,929

205,829

Foreign Securities

420,745

356,182

347,389

IMF Reserves Tranche

9,742

9,814

9,643

SDR Holdings

177,668

179,010

67

Treasury Bills

22,177

-

6,353

Long-Term Securities

125,154

105,802

126,275

Advances

111,988

97,906

72,431

Other Advances

11,218

11,794

11,997

Other Assets

38,580

35,004

31,239

Total Assets

1,074,524

1,066,441

811,223

(Source: Central Bank)

[Top] Financial Indicators & Government Financial

Consumer Price Index

 

Bahamas CPI (Consumer Price Index)

Base 1995 = 100

(Source: bahamas.gov.bs)

The consumer price index reflects a stable rise in the prices of consumer goods over recent years. The consumer price index rose from 115.27 in January 2005 to 131.20 in May 2010.

Interest rates on saving deposits

 

Interest Rate on saving deposits (%)

Period 2010

Rate

January

2.33

February

1.90

March

1.95

April

2.00

May

2.05

June

2.04

July

1.81

August

1.78

September

1.93

(Source: Central Bank)

Interest rates on time deposits

 

Interest Rate on time deposits (%)

Time deposits 2010

Up to 3 Months

Up to 6 Months

Up to 12 Months

Over 12 Months

January

3.52

3.75

4.07

4.54

February

3.47

3.90

4.41

4.72

March

3.35

3.54

4.18

3.67

April

3.22

3.56

4.16

3.91

May

3.24

3.50

3.95

3.97

June

3.23

3.47

3.91

3.61

July

3.13

3.66

3.75

3.80

August

3.10

3.64

3.99

4.09

September

3.03

3.56

3.84

4.10

(Source: Central Bank)

Money supply

 

Money Supply (BSD million)

 

December 2010

December 2009

Money Supply (M3)

6,211.1

6,036.5

Currency in Circulation

194

198.3

Demand Deposits

1,140.8

1,090.4

Savings Deposits

1,016.1

994.8

Fixed Deposits

3,608.1

3,536.2

F/C Deposits

252.1

216.8

(Source: Central Bank)

Government Expenditure

Government expenditure in the first quarter of 2010 amounted to BSD 382.72 million compared to BSD 368.55 million in the corresponding quarter of 2009.

(Source: Central Bank)

Official exchange rate

 

BSD/USD

December 2010

November 2010

October 2010

Buying

0.9950

0.9950

0.9950

Selling

1.0125

1.0125

1.0125

(Source: bundesbank.de)

Government finances

Fiscal balance


Bahamas Fiscal Balance

(Source: Central Bank)

P = provisional

The fiscal balance of the country reflects a deficit over the last five years. The amount of deficit has increased from BSD 100,789,000 in Q1 2009/10 to BSD 111,544,000 in Q1 2010/11.

Total Revenue

Government revenue in 2009-10 is estimated at BSD 1,400 million, comprising 18.9% of GDP.

 

Revenues of Central Government of Bahamas (BSD’ 000)

 

2010/2011 Q1

2009/2010 Q1

Tax Revenue

241,290

244,604

Non-Tax Revenue

29,884

23,156

Capital Revenue

4

1

Total

271,178

267,761

(Source: Central Bank)

Tax revenue

 

TAX REVENUE (BSD ’000)

Q1 2010/2011p

Q2 2009/2010p

Total Tax Revenue

241,290

244,604

Property Tax

10,352

11,563

Import Tax

86,100

90,573

Stamp Tax from Imports

2,691

3,076

Excise Tax

50,290

49,504

Export Tax

3,484

3,258

Stamp Duty on Exports

1

2

Business and Professional License

6,608

7,468

All Other Stamp Tax

23,629

30,397

Other Tax

21,323

22,132

Tax on Services

10,562

6,416

Motor Vehicle Tax

4,626

3,502

Departure Tax

22,142

16,986

(Source: Central Bank)

P = Provisional Data

Grants

Bahamas Grants

(Source: Central Bank)

P = Provisional Data

Current Account Balance - Surplus/Deficit

 

Bahamas Current Account Balance

(Source: Central Bank)

P = Provisional Data

The country has recorded a current account deficit for the last five quarters. However, the amount of deficit has declined from BSD 190.5 million in Q2 2009 to BSD 167.3 million in Q2 2010.

Balance of Payments (BSD million)

 

 

2010 Q2 (p)

2010 Q1 (p)

2009 Q4 (p)

2009 Q3 (p)

2009 Q2 (p)

Credit

Debit

Credit

Debit

Credit

Debit

Credit

Debit

Credit

Debit

Current Account

893.8

1,061.1

841.3

952.5

716.7

953.3

754.3

1,064.2

856.8

1,047.3

Capital and Financial Account

309.9

155

203.6

29.8

426

204

449.0

152.1

430.6

53.8

Net Errors and Omissions

55.6

0.0

0.0

59.7

75.6

0.0

0.0

2.5

0.0

39.7

Overall Balance

43.1

0.0

3.0

0.0

61

0.0

0.0

15.5

146.6

0.0

Financing

0.0

43.1

0.0

3.0

0.0

61.0

15.5

0.0

0.0

146.6

(Source: Central Bank)

(P) = Provisional Data

 

 

[Top] Labour Force and Employment Overview

Labour Force

In 2009, the total labour force of New Providence Island was 134,400 of which 67,330 were females and 67,070 were males. The labour force reflected a marginal decline of 0.98% compared to the labour force of 135,735 in 2008. The Grand Bahama has a total labour force of 28,820 in 2009 of which about 52% are males and 48% are females.

The total labour force in Bahamas in 2008 was 191,595, of which 93,160 were females and 98,435 were males.

(Source: bahamas.gov.bs,bahamas.gov.bs)

Labour force participation rate

The labour force participation in New Providence has declined from 77.3% in 2008 to 74.5% in 2009. The participation rate in the case of males and females was recorded at 79.6% and 70.3% respectively.

Similarly, in Grand Bahama, the labour force participation declined from 76.9% in 2008 to 74.6% in 2009. The participation rate of males was registered at 78.1% and that of females at 71.4%.

(Source: bahamas.gov.bs,bahamas.gov.bs)

Unemployment Rate

The unemployment rate has increased from 7.6% in 2006 to 14.2% in 2009. There are 16,315 unemployed individuals in New Providence Island, of which the majority are males. The unemployed labour force in Grand Bahama is 4,195 of which females are the majority. In 2009, the unemployment rate in New Providence was 12.1% and in Grand Bahama it was 14.6%.

(Source: bahamas.gov.bs, Central Bank)

 

Bahamas Unemployment Rate

(Source: Central Bank)

Minimum wage

The minimum wage rate in Bahamas is set at BSD 4 per hour or BSD 150 per week.

(Source: bahamaslocal)

Level of Unionisation

The major trade unions in the Bahamas include:

  • CW Bahamas Trade Union Congress
  • National Congress of Trade Unions

(Source: ITUC)

[Top] Political Stability

The government in Bahamas is a Parliamentary Democracy. The Bahamas is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, hence considers the Queen as the head of state. The Governor-General is the representative of the Queen in the country. The Prime minister is the Head of the Government. The Prime Minister along with the cabinet controls the government.

(Source: bahamas.gov.bs)

The parliament is bicameral having a Senate and an elected House of Assembly. The Senate is comprised of 16 members appointed by the Governor General for a term of five years. The Senate includes 16 members directly elected for five years.

(Source: bahamas.gov.bs, ipu.org)

Currently, Queen Elizabeth II is the head of the state and Hubert Ingraham is the Prime Minister.

(Source: BBC)

Regulatory Environment

The country’s economic freedom score is 68, making it the 46th freest economy in the 2011 Index of Economic Freedom. The Bahamas ranks 8th out of 29 regional countries in the South and Central America/Caribbean region.

 

 Bahamas Economic Freedom Indices

(Source:heritage.org)

Corruption perception

An average level of corruption is observed in the country. The Bahamas scores 55 points in the freedom from corruption score list. The level of corruption in the country has increased compared to the previous year. After 2008, an increase in the level of corruption was observed in the country.

(Source: heritage.org)

Freedom of Information

The constitution of the Bahamas guarantees freedom of press in the country. The various newspapers circulating in the country include:

  • The Nassau Guardian
  • The Bahama Journal
  • The Tribune
  • Freeport News
  • The Punch

(Source: bbc.co.uk)

Judicial system

English Common Law is the basis of the Bahamas’s legal system. The Chief Justice is the head of the Judiciary.

The Chief Justice and the Justices of the Court of Appeal inclusive of the President are appointed by the Governor-General on the advice of the Prime Minister. The Governor-General appoints the justice of the Supreme Court, Magistrates and Registrars under the instructions of the Judicial and Legal Service Commission. The Judicial and Legal Service Commission includes five members in which the Chief Justice acts as the Chairman. The bench of the Supreme Court includes 12 Justice including the Chief Justice and five Justices including the President in the Court of Appeal.

(Source: bahamas.gov.bs, bahamas.gov.bs)

The various courts in the country include:

The Privy Council

The Privy Council is the highest court for the country. The Judicial Committee sits in England to hear appeals from the Court of Appeal.

Court of Appeal

The Court of Appeal is the highest court in the country. It has legal powers in criminal, constitutional and civil matters. It functions as an independent institution under the constitution.

Supreme Court

The Supreme Court is the second highest tribunal in the country. It has unlimited legal powers in general, civil and criminal matters. And it functions as an independent institution under the constitution.

Magistrates’ Courts

Magistrates’ Courts are controlled by stipendiary and circuit magistrates. They exercise legal powers in criminal matters and civil matters of amount not exceeding BSD 5,000.


(Source: bahamas.gov.bs, bahamas.gov.bs)

[Top] Demographic Overview

Population

As per 2010 census, the Bahamas had a population of 353,658. The mid-year population recorded in 2010 was 346,900, of which about 48.74% were males and 51.26% were females.

In 2009, the population of the age group less than 14 years was 25.5% and the age group above 60 years was 11.1% for females and 9% for males.

(Source: bahamas.gov.bs,bahamas.gov.bs,UN)

 

 

Bahamas Population by Gender

Gender Ratio

In 2009, there were about 95.8 males per 100 females, reflecting a balanced gender ratio in the country.

(Source: UN)

Mortality Rate

In 2009, the mortality rate was 5.8 deaths per thousand people. The infant mortality rate has declined from 17.6 deaths per thousand people in 2007 to 14.8 deaths per thousand people in 2009.The average number of deaths recorded in mid-2010 was 162.83.

(Source: bahamas.gov.bs, World Bank)

Birth Rate

The crude birth rate registered in 2008 was 17 births per thousand people.

(Source: World Bank)

Average Life Expectancy at birth

The average life expectancy at birth between 2005 and 2010 for males was 76.2 years and for females was 70.6 years.

(Source: UNData)

Migration and Urbanisation

The urban population in 2007 was 83.5% and the average annual growth rate of the urban population for 2005 - 2010 was 1.4%.

(Source: UNData)

The international migrant stock in mid-2010 was 33,400 or 9.7% of the total population. The net international migration rate from 2005 to 2010 was recorded at 0.1%.

(Source: UNDP)

Racial/Ethnic environment

The ethnic group in the country is comprised of African, European, Asian and Hispanic. The various religions practiced in the country include Roman Catholic, Methodist, Baptist, Anglican, Evangelical Protestants, Rastafarian, traditional African and Church of God.

(Source: state.gov)

Human Development Index

The country ranks 43rd out of 169 countries on the United Nations’ Human Development Index in 2010. The HDI provides a composite measure of three dimensions of human development: living a long and healthy life (measured by life expectancy), being educated (measured by adult literacy and gross enrolment in education) and having a decent standard of living (measured by purchasing power parity, PPP, income).

(Source: UNDP)

[Top] Soft Infrastructure

Education

The literacy rate of the Bahamas is estimated to be 95%. The average public expenditure incurred on education from 2000 to 2007 was 19.7% of total government expenditure.

(Source: UNDP)

In 1878, the first clause of compulsory school attendance was passed in the country. However, the compulsory school attendance act on the Out Islands (excluding New Providence Island and Grand Bahama Island) was enforced in 1889. Education is compulsory for students between the age of 5 and 16 years.

(Source: bahamaseducation.com)

Health care

Health care in the Bahamas is provided through a network of public hospitals and community health clinics. The country also has private hospitals and physicians. About 85% of the country’s population are provided public health care services.

The Ministry of Health has the responsibility of preparing national health policies and works in co-ordination with other government agencies. The Public Hospitals Authority (PHA) is responsible for the management and development of public hospitals in the country.

The public expenditure incurred on health in 2006 was 13.9% of the total expenditure.

(Source: UNDP, Ministry of Health)

[Top] Hard Infrastructure

Mass public transit 

Mass public transport in the country includes roads and waterways.

Ports

Major ports in the country include:

 

Port Name

Port Authority

Port Type

Port Size

Freeport Container Port

Freeport Container Port Limited

Seaport

Medium

Marsh Harbour

-

Harbour

Small

Port of Nassau

Nassau Port Authority

Seaport

Small

(Source:world port source)

Airports

There are about 30 airports in the Bahamas. Few of the international airports in the country are listed below:

 

Airport name

Town

Runway length(ft)

Andros Town International

Andros

4,000

Chub Cay International

Chub Cay

5,000

Rock Sound International

Eleuthera

7,200

Grand Bahama International

Freeport

11,000

Exuma International

Great Exuma

7,000

Lynden Pindling International

Nassau

11,000

San Salvador International

San Salvador

4,500

(Source: Air charter world)

Telecommunications networks

There were about 31,600 fixed broadband subscriptions in 2009, recording 9.24 subscriptions per 100 inhabitants. (Source: itu.int)


Bahamas Internet Users

(Source:internetworldstats.com)

The number of internet users in the Bahamas was on a rise until 2009 recording a penetration rate of 46.2%. However, the number of users declined in 2010 registering a penetration rate of 42.3%.

The number of fixed telephone lines in the Bahamas declined from 139,900 in 2004 to 129,000 in 2009 registering a CAGR of -1.6%. The number of fixed telephone lines has declined from 43.53 per 100 inhabitants in 2004 to 37.74 lines per 100 inhabitants in 2009.

(Source: itu.int)

The number of mobile cellular subscriptions rose from 186,000 in 2004 to 358,800 in 2009 registering a CAGR of 14%. The ratio of mobile cellular subscriptions to fixed telephone lines was 2.8, indicating that the amount of mobile cellular usage in the country is greater compared to fixed telephone lines.

(Source: itu.int)

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