Find a business in Grenada

The small island state of Grenada in the Caribbean has seen its growing economy interrupted by natural disasters in the last decade. Its rural economy is dominated by the agricultural sector and the country is one of the original ‘spice’ islands and continues to export nutmeg and mace along with bananas and cocoa.The agricultural sector provides direct export earnings for Grenada, but its tourism industry has been developed and strengthened in recent years. The services sector now contributes 81% of GDP to Grenada’s economy. It has a GNI per capita of US$6,930 but has seen its growth hit by persistent hurricanes in the last five years.

Blessed as it is with a rugged coastline and beautiful beaches as well as tropical rainforests, Grenada has developed tourism as its main source of foreign currency. This was largely made possible by the construction of an international airport in 1985. In 2011 travel and tourism directly contributed 6.5% of GDP and generating 3,000 jobs – 6.1% of total employment (World Travel and Tourism Council estimate). With the majority of tourists coming from the USA, Grenada is vulnerable to downturns in the US economy which translate into fewer tourists.The government has encouraged development of industry to broaden the country’s economic base, but Grenada’s small scale and high costs hinder progress.

Agriculture, forestry and fisheries contribute around five per cent to Grenada’s GDP (2010). Agriculture is one of the most critical economic activities for sustained development of Grenada’s rural economy.

Grenada imports products mainly from the United States, United Kingdom and Japan. Imported commodities include food, manufactured goods, machinery, chemicals and fuel. Food is the island’s main import, which is used to cater for tourists. The island imported US$343 million worth of goods in 2006, while its total exports only amounted to $38 million. In 2009 imports were an estimated $252.8 million. Grenada exports commodities such as bananas, cocoa, nutmeg, fruit and vegetables, clothing and mace. The economy is very dependent on international trade and finances for the development and modernisation of the island.

Its outward-looking and open economy has been hit badly by hurricanes in the 2000s. A high level of public expenditure has had to be maintained in order to rebuild the disaster hit areas of the country. Economic growth remained stagnant in 2010-11 after a sizeable contraction in 2009, because of the global economic slowdown’s effects on tourism and remittances.

Grenada has a road network of approximately 1,127 km, 61 per cent of which is paved. The condition of the roads is generally good, although in mountainous areas roads tend to be narrow and winding.

Grenada is ranked 3rd best in the Latin America and Caribbean region for dealing with construction permits and trading across borders, according to the World Bank’s ‘Doing Business 2012’ study. These rankings measure the conduciveness of a regulatory regime in starting and operating a business.

Grenada’s official language is English and in 2006 their adult literacy rate was approximately 96 per cent. A labour force survey classified the majority of Grenada’s work force as being involved in craft work, with around 20 per cent of the population working in the sector (1998).