The Country Commercial Guide provides a useful starting point for U.S. businesses pursuing export and investment opportunities in Honduras.
- Bilateral Trade: The United States is Honduras’ largest trade and economic partner. U.S. exports to Honduras were $5.3 billion in 2013, slightly less than in 2012. Exports are expected to remain stable throughout 2014. The entry into force of the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) in 2006 boosted U.S. export opportunities and diversified the composition of bilateral trade. CAFTA-DR also put in place important measures related to investment, customs administration and trade facilitation, technical barriers to trade, government procurement, intellectual property rights, transparency, and labor and environmental protection. About 80 percent of U.S. goods now enter the region duty-free, with tariffs on the remaining 20 percent to be phased out by 2016.
- Key Economic Indicators: Honduras had an estimated per capita GDP of $2,920 in 2013. Honduras is one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere. Over 66 percent of the population lives in poverty. Honduras has enjoyed moderate economic growth since 2010, after a sharp decline in 2009 that had occurred due to the effects of the global economic downturn and Honduras’ domestic political crisis. GDP grew by 2.6% in 2013, and the rate of inflation in 2013 was 4.9%. The Honduran currency, the lempira has floated in a band system since 2011. The lempira depreciated by 3.2% percent against the U.S. dollar in 2013. The government of Honduras is targeting annual depreciation of 5% for 2014, 2015 and 2016 and a depreciation of 4.5% per year for 2017 and 2018, a measure which is supported by the banking sector. Foreign direct investment and domestic investment declined in 2009 but has recovered since then. The stock of U.S. foreign direct investment in Honduras was $881 million at the end of 2012, concentrated in the manufacturing sector. More than 200 American companies are currently operating in Honduras.
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