chapter  1
11 Pages

Introduction and Overview

WithNorman A. Graham, Keith L. Edwards, James J. Emery, Michael F. Oppenheimer, John G. Stover, Joseph H. Wex

Considerable analysis and policy prescription have been directed toward developments and emerging problems in the Caribbean basin countries of late. In general, the results of the projections and analysis make it clear that many of the Caribbean basin countries face a long-term struggle against severe demographic and economic pressures. This, of course, assumes no dramatic improvements in their trade and aid environments and no drastic policies to curb population growth in the near future. Future production levels and the extent to which these countries can obtain a significant economic return on their mineral resources through expanded trade will be constrained and influenced, however, by a large number of domestic and international factors. Even if one uses the fairly optimistic economic growth assumptions suggested by the World Bank, five countries--Nicaragua, El Salvador, Guyana, Honduras and Haiti--will be limited to an annual income per capita level of less than 1,000 dollars in the year 2000, according to projections.