The full impact of the recession on the Bahamian economy has been revealed by this nation’s 2009 trade date, which showed that exports declined by 16.6 per cent while imports fell by a similar year-over-year percentage, 16.45 per cent.
However, some of the import decline resulted from oil prices dropping from their 2008 peak. Traditionally the biggest component of total imports into the Bahamas, “mineral fuels” – petroleum products such as oil, gasoline and diesel – fell by over a third, or 34.5 per cent, from 2008 levels.
The figures, provided within the Department of Statistics’ newly released Annual Foreign Trade Statistics Report for 2009, provide a further insight into the severity of the global downturn’s effects on the Bahamian economy.
In a direct sign of the construction industry slowdown, manufactured goods, which include wood, metal, steel or other construction materials, declined by 11.2 per cent.