Barbados

In-depth country-focused analysis on Barbados's economic, political and operational risk environment, complemented by detailed sector insight

Barbados

Our comprehensive assessment of Barbados's operating environment and the outlook for its leading sectors are formed by bringing together a wealth of data on global markets that affect Barbados, as well as the latest industry developments that could impact Barbados' 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 Barbados before your competitors.

Country Risk

Barbados Country Risk

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Core Views:

  • We believe that the English-speaking Caribbean will continue to see a modest economic recovery in the coming quarters as US growth continues. A strengthening US consumer will boost tourism to the region, driving growth in tourism-dependent economies. Financial services will continue to struggle due to tightening financial regulation in developed economies, while lower precious metals prices will weaken the macroeconomic outlook for the region's miners. That said, growth will remain stronger in the region's mining-driven economies than in its predominantly tourism-driven countries.

  • Caribbean economies will continue to face economic headwinds in the coming years in light of rising debt burdens, fixed exchange rate regimes, and modest growth prospects. These factors, combined with our view that financial services sectors will see a significant...

Barbados Industry Coverage (5)

Food & Drink

Barbados Food & Drink

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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 pick up and growth becomes stronger in key markets like the US. The Dominican Republic and Jamaica will outperform other regional markets over the next five years. Nonetheless, small consumer bases will limit long-term investment opportunities.

Dominican Republic The Regional Outperformer
Select Countries - Food Sales Growth (% chg y-o-y, USD terms)
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Insurance

Barbados Insurance

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BMI View: Currency weakness will continue to plague the dollar terms returns of many of the Caribbean insurance sectors covered in this report. Offshore business in Barbados and the Cayman Islands, amounting to around USD45bn annually, dwarf the domestic sectors in the region. Health insurance, an underdeveloped line of business, is likely to outperform in many of these markets over the five-year forecast period.

The insurance markets of the Caribbean, particularly offshore business in Barbados and the Cayman Islands, but also domestic sectors, are heavily tied to the economic fortunes of the United States and, to a lesser extent, Canada. The ongoing recovery in both major North American markets should boost the fortunes of the region's insurers, driving demand for offshore reinsurance and captives, as well as boosting domestic economies. On the whole, regulation...

Barbados Insurance

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BMI View: We hold a mixed outlook for the Barbados insurance sector over forecast period, from 2016-2020. The non-life sector, which constitutes about two-thirds of total domestic insurance industry premiums, has reached market maturity and premiums are expected to post only modest growth, from an estimated USD202mn in 2016 to USD215mn by end of 2020. Driving this contraction is the crucial property insurance line that has stagnated and is dampening total non-life growth prospects. The vital motor insurance line will post modest yet stable growth. Conversely, on the other hand, we hold a positive opinion of the life insurance...

Telecommunications

Barbados Telecommunications

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BMI View: Haiti and Cuba represent the largest organic growth opportunities in the region, as both are significantly underdeveloped compared to their peers. However, the risks associated with business in these two markets mean that a mobile subscription boom is far from likely.

Key Data

  • Cayman Islands has the highest mobile penetration, at 153.4% in 2015, while Cuba's penetration rate remains below the regional average, at 28.9%.

  • The number of mobile lines in Cuba reached the 3mn mark in Q215, up from 2.4mn lines at the start of 2015, according to data published by state-owned telecoms operator Empresa de Telecomunicaciones de Cuba (ETECSA). The increase was mainly owing to a promotion, called Si activas ganas 30, wherein new users obtained USD30 in credit for activating a...

Tourism

Barbados Tourism

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BMI View: Arrivals growth in the Caribbean will pick up to 2.3% in 2016, reflecting improved visitor numbers from Europe and North America. The Dominican Republic, St Eustatius and Cuba are expecting the highest rate of arrivals growth, but all tourism markets will experience growth in 2016. However, the outbreak of the Zika virus from late 2015 could pose downside risks to 2016 arrivals forecasts.

We currently expect arrivals to the Caribbean to grow by 2.3% in 2016, to 33.5mn, reflecting an improvement from growth of only 0.6% in 2015. We expect the Dominican Republic, Cuba, St Eustatius and St Lucia to post the highest level of arrivals growth in 2016, at around 6%, but we note the positive sign that all Caribbean countries except St Vincent will experience arrivals growth in 2016, for the first time since the downturn....

Latest Barbados Articles

  • We have upgraded our oil price forecast this month with markets having pric...

  • Record profits achieved in 2015 were due, in no small part, to the performa...

  • We are bullish oil prices from a multi-month perspective and maintain our f...

Latest Barbados Blogs

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