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GOVT. SPENDS TO BOOST ECONOMY.

The Barbados Government announced a Bds$31.8 million (US$15.9 million) intervention package to shore up the economy in the wake of the fall-out from the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the U.S. and an anticipated global recession, reports CMC (Oct. 30, 2001):

Economic Development Minister Reginald Farley said the bulk of the money -- Bds$30.5 million (US$15.25 million) -- would go to the tourism sector, which is the country's major foreign exchange earner. This would include US$400,000 to support the activities of airlines flying into Barbados and US$4.8 million for a new tourism marketing program. Government is also considering US$2.6 million for tour operators directing business to the island; a US$10 million fund to assist hotels which face income loss and the securing of US$150 million loan on the international capital markets. Tourism, which contributes 15% to the real gross domestic product (GDP) and directly employs over 12,000 workers, was the sector mostly affected by the attacks on Sep. 11, Farley said;

The aid package for tourism was announced the same day

That Central Bank Governor Dr. Marion Williams told the press that the Barbados economy contracted by 1.5% during the first nine months of this year with deep declines in the traded sectors, but she was reluctant to label it a recession. A 2% contraction for all of 2001 is projected by the Central Bank. The jobless rate rose to 10% in June, vs. 9.3% in December 2000. The 2001 sugar crop of 50,000 tons was 14.7% below last year's level, while non-sugar agriculture fell by 5.1% and manufacturing declined by 7.6%.

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Publication:Caribbean Update
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:5BARB
Date:Dec 1, 2001
Words:286
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