Aruba: Economy#

Tourism, petroleum bunkering, hospitality, and financial and business services are the mainstays of the small open Aruban economy.

Tourist arrivals have rebounded strongly following a dip after the 2008 global financial crisis. Tourism now accounts for a majority of economic activity. Over 1 million tourists per year visit Aruba, with the large majority of those from the US. The rapid growth of the tourism sector has resulted in a substantial expansion of other activities. Construction continues to boom with hotel capacity five times the 1985 level.

Aruba is heavily dependent on imports and is making efforts to expand exports to achieve a more desirable trade balance. Almost all consumer and capital goods are imported, with the US, the Netherlands, and Panama being the major suppliers.

Aruba weathered two major shocks in recent years: fallout from the global financial crisis, which had its largest impact on tourism, and the closure of its oil refinery in 2009. However, tourism and related industries have continued to grow, and the Aruban government is working to attract more diverse industries. Aruba's banking sector withstood the recession well, and unemployment has significantly decreased.

Economic Facts#

GDP (purchasing power parity)$2.516 billion (2009 est.)
$2.258 billion (2005 est.)
$2.205 billion (2004 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$2.516 billion (2009 est.)
GDP - real growth rate2.4% (2005 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$25,300 (2011 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 60.3%
government consumption: 26.2%
investment in fixed capital: 22.3%
investment in inventories: 0%
exports of goods and services: 70.2%
imports of goods and services: -79% (2014 est.)
GDP - composition, by sector of originagriculture: 0.4%
industry: 33.3%
services: 66.3% (2002 est.)
Agriculture - productsaloes; livestock; fish
Industriestourism, petroleum transshipment facilities, banking
Industrial production growth rateNA%
Labor force51,610
note: of the 51,610 workers aged 15 and over in the labor force, 32,252 were born in Aruba and 19,353 came from abroad; foreign workers are 38% of the employed population (2007 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%

note: most employment is in wholesale and retail trade, followed by hotels and restaurants
Unemployment rate6.9% (2005 est.)
Population below poverty lineNA%
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Budgetrevenues: $696.5 million
expenditures: $751.8 million (2016 est.)
Taxes and other revenues27.7% of GDP (2016 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-2.2% of GDP (2016 est.)
Public debt67% of GDP (2013)
55% of GDP (2012)
Fiscal yearcalendar year
Inflation rate (consumer prices)-0.8% (2016 est.)
0.5% (2015 est.)
Central bank discount rate1% (31 December 2010)
3% (31 December 2009)
Commercial bank prime lending rate9% (31 December 2016 est.)
8.25% (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of narrow money$1.151 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of broad money$2.126 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$1.942 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$1.768 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$1.768 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Exports$299.9 million (2016 est.)
$333.2 million (2015 est.)
Exports - commoditieslive animals and animal products, art and collectibles, machinery and electrical equipment, transport equipment
Exports - partnersColombia 28.2%, Netherlands Antilles 18.1%, US 14.3%, Netherlands 10.1%, Mexico 6.5%, Venezuela 6.3%, Panama 4.1% (2015)
Imports$1.294 billion (2016 est.)
$1.269 billion (2015 est.)
Imports - commoditiesmachinery and electrical equipment, refined oil for bunkering and reexport, chemicals; foodstuffs
Imports - partnersUS 55.4%, Netherlands 11.2% (2015)
Debt - external$693.2 million (31 December 2014 est.)
$666.4 million (31 December 2013 est.)
Exchange ratesAruban guilders/florins per US dollar -
1.79 (2016 est.)
1.79 (2015 est.)
1.79 (2014 est.)
1.79 (2013 est.)
1.79 (2012 est.)