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Economic Conditions and Trade

Page history last edited by Joe 12 years, 4 months ago

Page Editor is Joe Hackett. Please email me with suggestions, comments, or compliments!

Economic Conditions and Trade




Farmer harvesting peanuts in Bissau.                                                     Source: www.everyculture.com


One of the five 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 fifth 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.


Source:  http://www.afribiz.info/


Economic Statistics


- Gross Domestic Product: (2009): $826 million.


- Annual growth rate: (2009): 3%.


- Gross Dosmestic Product per capita: (2009): $512.


- Natural resources: Fish and timber. Bauxite and phosphate deposits are 

  not exploited; offshore petroleum.


- Foreign aid: Guinea-Bissau is desperately poor, (ranked 173rd out of 182 )

with huge foreign debt and an economy that limps along thanks to foreign aid.


- Agriculture: (62% of GDP): Products--cashews, tropical fruits, rice, peanuts, 

  cotton, palm oil. Arable land--11%. Forested--38%.


- Industry: (12% of GDP): Cashew processing. Very little industrial capacity 

  remains following the 1998 internal conflict.


- Major suppliers: (2009)--Portugal 24.5%, Senegal 17.2%, Pakistan 4.8%, 

France 4.6%.


Top Five Imports and Exports

Major Illicit Trade Types

1. Drug Trafficking:  

An estimated 50 tons of illicit drugs, worth almost US$2 billion, pass through the region each year,

according to UN reports, which approximate that some 27% of the cocaine consumed annually in Europe

transits through West Africa.


2.  Child Trafficking:

Child trafficking from Guinea-Bissau to Senegal is on the decline, partly due to better collaboration among

local residents, civil society groups and government.


3.  Bush Meat sales:

Unsustainable levels of bushmeat hunting could threaten both wildlife populations and the people who

depend on bushmeat for food or income.  


The Future of Guinea-Bissau


Future of Guinea-Bissau depends on how it handles challenges like drug and child 

trafficking, large-scale poverty, corruption and heavy external debt. Fishing as an industry 

can propel Guinea-Bissau’s economy, but illegal fishing poses a few problems for that sector. 


Source: www.afribiz.info/


Comments (5)

Annette Diniz said

at 9:27 am on Feb 2, 2011

Does the heavy external debt come from their imports from other countries or borrowing?

Joe said

at 11:29 am on Feb 2, 2011

Yes, Guinea Bissau relies on imports from other countries due to a poor economy that relies on a narrow selection of exports such as cashews, shrimp and sawn lumber. There is little economic infrastructure emerging because Bissau was essentially decapitalized for 10 years during a civil war from late 1980's.

Joe said

at 11:30 am on Feb 2, 2011

Here's a great link to the economic and historical understanding of Guinea-Bissau:

Shellar said

at 10:41 am on Feb 2, 2011

It would also be interesting to see how much a family earns a year to see with how much do they survive....(example: american families spend a week in food more or less $350..while in Chad $1.32)

SfWhitehorn@gmail.com said

at 6:22 pm on Feb 7, 2011

I appreciate this information as a segueway into drug trafficking and the overlaps of economic conditions of trade. Great presentation.

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