Our comprehensive assessment of Jamaica's operating environment and the outlook for its leading sectors are formed by bringing together a wealth of data on global markets that affect Jamaica, as well as the latest industry developments that could impact Jamaica's industries. This unique integrated approach has given us an impeccable track-record for predicting important shifts in the markets, ensuring you’re aware of the latest market opportunities and risks in Jamaica before your competitors.
Jamaica Country Risk
We believe that rising gold production, a gradually improving tourism sector, and stronger private consumption growth will drive robust real GDP growth rates in the Dominican Republic in the coming years.
We expect Puerto Rico to remain in a recession through fiscal year 2015 amid high unemployment and weak investment, and see a high likelihood of debt restructuring by the commonwealth's electric power authority (PREPA) this year.
We expect the Cuban economy to accelerate in the coming years, on the back of the government's drive to attract greater levels of investment, and on continued expansion of the consumer sector. This will help to offset weakness in the export sector, and rising demand for imports.
Major Forecast Changes:
Jamaica Country Risk
Jamaica Industry Coverage (5)
Food & Drink
Jamaica Food & Drink
BMI View: We are turning more positive regarding economic growth in the Caribbean, as structural and financial reforms take hold in the region, tourism numbers are picking up, and growth is stronger in key western states such as the US. That said, many regional economies continue to be heavily indebted which limits general investment. We believe that general food consumption growth will be strongest in Jamaica and the Dominican Republic. In the Dominican Republic's case, food consumption is coming off of a very low base. Ongoing recession in Puerto Rico, one of the region's most sophisticated markets, is likely to continue in 2015.
Headline Industry Data
Forecast 2015 food consumption growth (local currency):
BMI View: As in previous annual reports, we think that it is still fair and reasonable to describe the Caribbean as something of a backwater in terms of the insurance sectors of the various countries. A comparison with nearby markets in Latin America indicates that the Caribbean markets are small and not particularly rapidly growing.
In all five countries that we consider - Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Bahamas, Dominican Republic and Barbados - a lacklustre economic environment has contained the growth of premiums and - in the life segments especially - boosted lapse rates. This has happened at a time that low interest rates and the restructuring of Jamaica's government debt have reduced investment income. Nevertheless, the major players are being proactive. As of late 2013, Guardian Holdings Limited (GHL) has introduced a new and unified brand for the entire region,...
BMI View: We expect uneven mining sector growth through 2018 across various countries within Central America and the Caribbean. The region has significant untapped mineral potential, though variations among countries' business environments and operational challenges will mean varied performance. Overall, we expect Colombia and Panama to see the strongest mining sector growth, while Guatemala, and to a lesser extent Honduras, underperform.
We expect Colombia and Panama to lead the region in terms of mining sector development, with the Dominican Republic not far behind. The former two lead in their overall business environments and mining sector regulatory framework, which should enable consistent investment and sector development...
BMI View: 2015 seems poised to be a big year for the Caribbean, with a number of major developments that could transform the telecom industries in a number of markets. The CWC acquisition of Columbus International will have a far-reaching regional impact in the broadband internet and pay-TV markets, which remain underdeveloped and ripe for growth. New players are expected in the Bahamas and Trinidad & Tobago, and new regulators in Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Barbados and Haiti could lead to huge improvements in the business environment. Agreements between the US and Cuba have shocked the world. Cuba represents the most attractive market in the Caribbean in terms of total size and growth opportunities, however, we don't expect to see this play out. Nonetheless, there will be massive interest from lots of international players....
BMI View: The Caribbean region is returning to sustained growth, with all countries expecting tourist arrivals to increase in 2015 and 2016. However, growth is expected to remain below pre-2007 levels, with regional arrivals now increasing at an average of about 3% annually. Nonetheless, we expect that improving growth prospects will encourage greater investment in the region, particularly in the hotel sector.
Our tourism report for the Caribbean considers the impact of ongoing global economic uncertainty on the Caribbean tourism industry and how the region's fiscal issues are affecting tourism arrivals. Following the decline of the financial services industry after the economic downturn hit in 2007, tourism has increased in...