Rank of Honduras from the poorest is 68th and from the riches is 137 with national average per capita income using atlas method in 2003 is 970$ and in other methods such as IMF,WB and CIA in nomial method in 2007, 2007, and 2008,
Honduras is one of the poorest countries in the American continent, with over 60% of the population living in what the United Nations officially classify as poverty. Most Hondurans work very hard to earn, on average, USD165.00 a month. Those in the agriculture and industrial sectors earn the lowest wages; those employed by the services sector earn slightly better salaries.
Pedro Castro crafts leather wallets in the town of Valle de Angeles
According to official figures, no more than 40% of Hondurans are economically active. This group is made up of Hondurans between 20 to 45 years of age. 40% of them work in the agriculture sector, 30% in services and 16% in industry. The number of people employed in agriculture is decreasing, whilst the opposite is true for the services and industry sectors. The employment figure above might seem small at first glance, but many Hondurans work as part of what is called "the informal economy", which means that they work independently selling fruits, vegetables, clothes, and various other items in the streets. They do not contribute taxes and are far too numerous for the government to keep track of or have any accurate data on.
What Honduras produces
For most of the XX century, the Honduran economy was mostly agricultural-based, depending on traditional exports such as bananas and coffee. Political stability in the last 25 years has allowed the Honduran economy to diversify into other areas such as tourism, apparel manufacture and shrimp farming.
(No, the photo isn't upside down
- that's the way they grow.)
Coffe "beans" are actually the seeds extracted from the fruit, then dried and roasted.
Pineapple plantations in northern Honduras
Photo by Juan Bendeck.
Over the last 15 years, the apparel industry has firmly established itself in Honduras, employing 130,000 Honduras. These are generally better paid that other industry workers in the country, but the apparel business is notorius for its ability to swiftly relocate to another country as soon as conditions become unfavourable.
Honduras at work in an apparel shop
In terms of volume, the mayor outputs of the Honduran agricultural sector are sugar cane, African palm, bananas, maize (corn) and coffee.
Honduras's natural resources hold great potential, but these need to be managed carefully if they are to contribute to the country's prosperity.
Perhaps the greatest untapped potential source of income for the country is tourism, which is prospering thanks to recent public and private investment, but there is till room for growth: today tourists from other countries in Central America still outnumber those from North America and Europe.
Trade relations with the U.S. have long been of absolute importance to the Honduran economy. Even today, half of Honduras's exports go to the U.S and over a third what it imports comes from the U.S. However, trade with European countries and the rest of Latinamerica is on the rise.
Clothing apparel, coffee, shrimp, bananas, palm oil, gold, zinc/lead concentrates, soap/detergents, melons, lobster, pineapple, lumber, sugar, tobacco. Of these, coffee, bananas, shrimp and lobster provide the greatest income from international trade. Honduras exports mainly to the U.S., Belgium, El Salvador, Guatemala and Germany.
Honduran coffe is regarded for its taste in the global market and Honduran hand-rolled cigars are known internationally for their outstanding quality.
Not being and industrialised nation, Honduras has to import almost everything: fabrics, yarn, machinery, chemicals, everything petroleum-based (i.e., fuels & lubricants), vehicles, processed foods, metals, agricultural products, plastic, paper products, electrical appliances, computers, electronics, etc. These come mainly from the U.S., Guatemala, Costa Rica, México, Japan and Brasil.
For those of you with a mind for numbers and figures, here are a few that will sketch a quick picture of the Honduran economy today:
Per capita GDP: USD1,126
Per capita income: USD1,980