Puerto Rico

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

Puerto Rico

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

Country Risk

Puerto Rico Country Risk

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Core Views

  • Bermuda's prolonged recession continued into 2014, and we now expect this economic contraction to continue over the coming years. We expect that an international crackdown on offshore financial centres such as Bermuda will lead to a decline in financial services activity, one of the key contributors to the island's economy. Although tourism will rise, it will not be enough to offset tempered insurance activities.

  • Bermuda's current account will remain in surplus over the course of our 10-year forecast period, though the surplus will decrease to 10.4% of GDP by 2024, down from 17.4% in 2014, in line with our projections for slowing exports of tourism services and secular decline in off-shore finance.

  • Despite poor growth prospects, Bermuda will remain politically stable over the next 10 years owing to the...

Puerto Rico Country Risk

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Core Views:

  • A gradually improving tourism sector and strong private consumption growth will help drive robust real GDP growth rates in the Dominican Republic in the coming years.

  • Puerto Rico will emerge from recession in 2016, but weak revenue generation means that additional debt defaults are on the cards.

  • Reforms in Cuba are headed in a positive direction, and investor interest is on the rise, however the country's transition towards a more market-oriented economy will be slow, as illustrated by the incremental steps towards abolishing the dual exchange rate regime.

Major Forecast Changes:

  • Buoyant government expenditure and solid private consumption, even despite slumping precious metals production, will support real GDP growth to a greater...

Puerto Rico Industry Coverage (4)

Food & Drink

Puerto Rico 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)

Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare

Puerto Rico Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare

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BMI View: Despite short-term headwinds due to fiscal tightening, Puerto Rico's pharmaceutical market is expected to observe modest positive growth over the next five years. This slightly improved outlook already represents a recovery trend against the negative market growth patterns observed in recent years. Over the next few years, Puerto Rico's increase in funding through the Medicaid programme and key changes to the healthcare policy will act as main drivers of pharmaceutical growth. That said, we expect the effects of healthcare coverage expansion on market growth to be partially counterbalanced by continuing cost control measures and an increasing use of generic drugs.

Headline Expenditure Projections

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Puerto Rico 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...


Puerto Rico 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 Puerto Rico Articles

  • 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...

  • Below, we analyse the elections at a presidential, legislative and regional...

Latest Puerto Rico Blogs

Latest Puerto Rico Podcasts


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