Belize's Regional Integration Options: Guatemala and Mexico

Jun 2017
Export-led growth is the most sustainable way for Belize to raise its long-run rate of growth of GDP per head to meet the aspirations of its people and to put external debt servicing on a more secure basis. Expanding exports of goods and services to Guatemala and Mexico would be a useful step in this direction. This can be done by emphasizing tourism and non-travel services to Guatemala and Mexico which could help to increase the value of exports. Other services, such as transport, business outsourcing and finance, also have potential for expansion. Key recommendations to promote trade with Guatemala and Mexico include: increasing the capacity to estimate unrecorded exports of goods; increasing Belize¿s national capacity to produce an exportable surplus so that increased exports to these two markets do not simply displace exports to other countries; developing a strategy for promotion of non-tourism services exports; and revising and expanding the Partial Scope Agreement (PSA) with Guatemala to stimulate Belizean exports.