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International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
Grenada’s economy was hit hard by the pandemic, with a decline in real output of 14 percent in 2020 from both a collapse of tourism-related activities and the suspension of in-person classes at Saint George’s University (SGU). Growth in 2021 is estimated to have partly recovered to 5.6 percent, driven by construction and agriculture. The authorities’ policy response helped mitigate the pandemic’s impact through containment measures, increased health and social spending, and an expanded public investment program (including to build resilience to natural disasters). Central government debt rose to 70 percent of GDP in 2021 (from 59 percent in 2019) and the external position has worsened. The financial sector has so far weathered the crisis well.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
Trinidad and Tobago faced unprecedented challenges in 2020–21. The combined effects of COVID-19 and energy production and price shocks pushed the economy further into recession. A decisive policy response helped contain the virus spread and protect lives and livelihoods. The fiscal position worsened due to significant tax revenues shortfalls, pushing public debt up. The vaccination pace accelerated recently, but vaccine hesitancy remains high, amid a potential new wave of infections.
Mr. Mauricio Vargas and Daniela Hess
Using data from 1980-2017, this paper estimates a Global VAR (GVAR) model taylored for the Caribbean region which includes its major trading partners, representing altogether around 60 percent of the global economy. We provide stilyzed facts of the main interrelations between the Caribbean region and the rest of the world, and then we quantify the impact of external shocks on Caribbean countries through the application of two case studies: i) a change in the international price of oil, and ii) an increase in the U.S. GDP. We confirmed that Caribbean countries are highly exposed to external factors, and that a fall in oil prices and an increase in the U.S. GDP have a positive and large impact on most of them after controlling for financial variables, exchange rate fluctuations and overall price changes. The results from the model help to disentangle effects from various channels that interact at the same time, such as flows of tourists, trade of goods, and changes in economic conditions in the largest economies of the globe.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

This paper discusses economic developments, outlook, and risks in Trinidad and Tobago. The economic output of Trinidad and Tobago has continued to shrink. Ongoing maintenance and further declines in gas and oil production are estimated to have driven energy output 4.7 percent lower (year over year) as of September 2015. The longstanding current account surplus turned into a 5.4 percent of GDP deficit in 2015. The significant terms-of-trade shock implies that the real effective exchange rate has become more overvalued. Risks to growth are tilted to the downside, and much will depend on the authorities' ability to navigate the transition to the lower energy price environment.

International Monetary Fund
The Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) has made significant progress in improving the quality and quantity of the macroeconomic statistics it produces and disseminates to the public. The Selected Issues Paper discusses prospects and challenges for credit unions in the ECCU. It reviews the current state of macroeconomic statistics, outlines progress that has been made, and identifies outstanding challenges. It also describes technical assistance to the region and presents the challenges for the production of macroeconomic statistics in small island states.
Ms. Lisa Drakes, Ms. Chrystol Thomas, Roland Craigwell, and Kevin Greenidge
This paper addresses the issue of threshold effects between public debt and economic growth in the Caribbean. The main finding is that there exists a threshold debt to gross domestic product (GDP) ratio of 55–56 percent. Moreover, the debt dynamics begin changing well before this threshold is reached. Specifically, at debt levels lower than 30 percent of GDP, increases in the debt-to-GDP ratio are associated with faster economic growth. However, as debt rises beyond 30 percent, the effects on economic growth diminishes rapidly and at debt levels reaching 55-56 percent of GDP, the growth impacts switch from positive to negative. Thus, beyond this threshold, debt becomes a drag on growth.