Country Listing

Haiti Table of Contents


Balance of Payments

Chronic trade deficits, dating back to 1965, had contributed to the country's current-account deficits throughout the 1980s. Tourism receipts cushioned negative trade performance, but not enough to balance the current account. Many Haitians living in other countries sent foreign currency to their families still living in Haiti. These remittances continued to grow during the 1980s; in some of these years, they equaled more than half of the total value of exports, and they thus partially offset export shortfalls.

Haiti had a negative balance of payments in the 1980s, although surpluses in the capital account, mainly the result of official aid flows, helped to cover current-account deficits for FY 1987 and FY 1988. Electoral violence in November 1987, however, moved some donor nations to reduce or cut off aid flows in 1988. Along with accelerated capital flight, this move turned overall accounts negative, draining foreign-exchange reserves to a level equal to only four weeks of imports.

Data as of December 1989