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Ms. Yan M Sun and Mr. Wendell A. Samuel

between the two. By far the most important influence of the U.S. on the tourism-dependent ECCU countries is through tourism receipts, with trade in goods playing a much smaller role. About one third of the stayover tourists to the ECCU countries are from the U.S., the top tourism-source country. These economies are also heavily dependent on the U.S. for foreign direct investment mainly in tourism. In contrast, the U.S. accounts for less than 5 percent of ECCU exports. Furthermore, the flow of remittances is an important channel of influence, with a significant

International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

data have improved in the ECCU economies . Estimates of visitor expenditure, included as travel services exports in the balance of payments, are now based on recent surveys of visitors. The correct inclusion of tuition fees and other education-related travel services provided by offshore universites (OUs) to nonresident students as part of the ECCU exports is among the most significant methodological changes introduced in the updated methodology. A specific ESS survey form of OUs has been implemented and administrative data used as complementary sources. In the case

International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

quality is being progressively improved, CARTAC TA missions have also encouraged authorities to increase the information available to users. 41. Visitor and student expenditure data have improved in the ECCU economies . Estimates of visitor expenditure, included as travel services exports in the balance of payments, are now based on recent surveys of visitors. The correct inclusion of tuition fees and other education-related travel services provided by offshore universities (OUs) to nonresident students as part of the ECCU exports is among the most significant

International Monetary Fund

, particularly arrowroot. Figure VII.2. ECCU: Exports of Goods and Tourism Receipts, 1995–2002 (In percent of GDP) Sources: IMF Direction of Trade Statistics; IMF Balance of Payments Statistics; Fund staff estimates. 28. The countries experiencing sharp declines in agricultural exports are largely dependent on banana exports and the preferential access to the European Union (EU) market . The move to significantly alter these countries’ access to the EU market has had a severe impact on their economies. In 1997, the EU found that employment in the banana

International Monetary Fund

and services do not directly affect equation (2), they are of critical importance for GDP and, as a consequence, are presented in Table V.1 . Exports of goods and services declined substantially in all ECCU countries (with the exception of St. Kitts and Nevis), especially during 2001–02, when tourism-related activities contracted sharply following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Figure V.3. ECCU: Selected Macroeconomic Indicators (Yearly Averages) Sources: Country authorities; and Fund staff estimates. Table V.1. ECCU: Exports of

Mr. Manuk Ghazanchyan, Li Zhao, Steve Brito, and Vivian Parlak

estimates. International Investment Position (Percent of GDP) Sources: Eastern Caribbean Central Bank databae and IMF staff calculations. Unemployment Rate (Percent) Sources: World Development Indicators database, WB; Youth Unemployment in the Caribbean (year); national authorities; and IMF staff calculations. The ECCU’s share of global tourism market has declined . Largely dependent on the North American and UK markets, tourism has become a key component of ECCU exports. Global tourism has expanded significantly in the last few years, with

Mr. Montfort Mlachila

of total exports of goods by ECCU countries remained virtually unchanged in nominal terms during 1991–2003 ( Table 12.3 and Figure 12.3 , in part due to the increasing international competition in two key export products, bananas and sugar. At the same time, the available evidence seems to suggest the growth of trade-diverting integration, as intra-ECCU exports increased from about 12 to 23 percent of total exports ( Figure 12.4 ), while the overall level of intra-ECCU exports as a percent of GDP remains very low ( Figure 12.5 ). Figure 12.2 . Indicators of

Mr. Manuk Ghazanchyan, Li Zhao, Steve Brito, and Vivian Parlak
Tourism has become the main driver of economic growth and employment and the most important source of income in the ECCU. Preserving and, possibly, enhancing the competitiveness of the tourism product is key for these countries. Unfortunately, the evidence shows that tourism arrivals to the ECCU have been declining slightly while global demand for tourism is on the rise. The objective of this paper is to study the structural determinants of competitiveness for the ECCU, defined as the relative cost advantage over other touristic regions (Di Bella, Lewis, and Martin 2007). Using a gravity model, we show that proximity to North American and European markets is indeed an important competitive advantage for the ECCU. However, despite this advantage, and, in some cases, specialization in high-end tourism, regression analysis shows that arrivals to the ECCU are sensitive to relative prices. Our simulations show that mitigating supply-side constraints would improve the ECCU’s competitiveness and allow the region to regain global market shares.
Ms. Yan M Sun and Mr. Wendell A. Samuel
With a fixed peg to the U.S. dollar for more than three decades, the tourism-dependent Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) countries share a close economic relationship with the U.S. This paper analyzes the impact of the United States on ECCU business cycles and identifies possible transmission channels. Using two different approaches (the common trends and common cycles approach of Vahid and Engle (1993) and the standard VAR analysis), it finds that the ECCU economies are very sensitive to both temporary and permanent movements in the U.S. economy and that such linkages have strengthened over time. There is, however, less clear-cut evidence on the transmission channels. United States monetary policy does not appear to be an important channel of influence, while tourism is important for only one ECCU country.
International Monetary Fund

rate. Response of ECCU Growth to a Percentage Point Shock in Real Growth Source: Fund staff estimates. OECS member states have set themselves the goal of forming an OECS Economic Union by 2009, and Trinidad and Tobago is expected to become a member by 2011 . Reformulating the SVAR to include Trinidad and Tobago and the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom as a group yields little evidence that Trinidad and Tobago is a key growth driver of the ECCU. This result probably reflects the services-oriented nature of ECCU exports and the limited