Cook Islands: Economy#

Like many other South Pacific island nations, the Cook Islands' economic development is hindered by the isolation of the country from foreign markets, the limited size of domestic markets, lack of natural resources, periodic devastation from natural disasters, and inadequate infrastructure. Agriculture, employing more than one-quarter of the working population, provides the economic base with major exports of copra and citrus fruit. Black pearls are the Cook Islands' leading export. Manufacturing activities are limited to fruit processing, clothing, and handicrafts. Trade deficits are offset by remittances from emigrants and by foreign aid overwhelmingly from New Zealand. In the 1980s and 1990s, the country lived beyond its means, maintaining a bloated public service and accumulating a large foreign debt. Subsequent reforms, including the sale of state assets, the strengthening of economic management, the encouragement of tourism, and a debt restructuring agreement, have rekindled investment and growth.

Economic Facts#

GDP (purchasing power parity)$183.2 million (2005 est.)
GDP - real growth rate0.1% (2005 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$9,100 (2005 est.)
GDP - composition, by sector of originagriculture: 5.1%
industry: 12.7%
services: 82.1% (2010 est.)
Population below poverty lineNA%
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 29%
industry: 15%
services: 56% (1995)
Exports - commoditiescopra, papayas, fresh and canned citrus fruit, coffee; fish; pearls and pearl shells; clothing
Agriculture - productscopra, citrus, pineapples, tomatoes, beans, pawpaws, bananas, yams, taro, coffee; pigs, poultry
Budgetrevenues: $70.95 million
expenditures: $69.05 million (FY05/06)
Imports - commoditiesfoodstuffs, textiles, fuels, timber, capital goods
Exchange ratesNZ dollars (NZD) per US dollar -
1.247 (2013)
1.2659 (2011 est.)
1.3874 (2010)
1.6002 (2009)
1.4151 (2008)
Exports$5.222 million (2005 est.)
Debt - external$141 million (1996 est.)
Fiscal year1 April - 31 March
Imports$83.49 million (2011 est.)
$80.55 million
Industrial production growth rate1% (2002)
Industriesfruit processing, tourism, fishing, clothing, handicrafts
Inflation rate (consumer prices)2.2% (2011 est.)
2.2% (2011 est.)
Labor force6,820 (2001)
Unemployment rate13.1% (2005)
Current account balance$26.67 million (2005)
GDP (official exchange rate)$183.2 million (2005 est.)
Stock of narrow money$38.99 million (31 December 2011 est.)
$38.99 million (31 December 2011 est.)
Stock of broad money$148.2 million (31 December 2011 est.)
$170.9 million (31 December 2010 est.)
Taxes and other revenues38.7% of GDP (FY05/06)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)1% of GDP (FY05/06)