Business Monitor International

Trinidad & Tobago Business Forecast Report

Published 26 August 2014

  • 33 pages
  • Instant access to your report online and PDF format through your account library
  • Includes 3 free updated quarterly reports
Trinidad & Tobago Business Forecast Report

Core Views:

  • We maintain our forecast for real GDP growth in Trinidad & Tobago (T&T) to accelerate to 2.6% in 2014 and 3.0% in 2015, up from 1.6% growth in 2013. We expect recent tax reforms will incentivise greater investment into the twin islands' key energy sector, while low interest rates will continue to spur growth in consumer lending, bolstering private consumption.

  • Elevated public spending in advance of national elections in May 2015 will drive a widening of T&T's budget deficit in 2014. Beginning in H215, stronger revenues on the back of accelerating real GDP growth will lead the shortfall to begin to narrow.

  • T&T's current account balance will remain in surplus in the coming years, driven by improving export performance in the energy sector. Recent tax reform will also continue to encourage an uptick in private foreign direct investment.

Major Forecast Changes:

  • We have revised our 2014 average exchange rate forecast to TTD6.373/USD, from TTD6.430/USD previously. The unit has strengthened in recent months, reversing its Q114 losses, likely bolstered by stronger goods exports as energy sector production has picked up. However, we believe that further appreciation will be limited, as energy prices will be tempered in the months ahead and the central bank will look to support export competitiveness. 

Key Risks To Outlook

  • Weaker hydrocarbons production and exports than we anticipate in the coming months could weigh on headline real GDP growth and see the current account shortfall increase less than we anticipate. Moreover, further weakness in energy exports could feed through to more substantial depreciation in the Trinidad & Tobago dollar than we anticipate this year.

Macroeconomic Forecasts (Trinidad & Tobago 2012-2015)
  2012 2013e 2014f 2015f
Nominal GDP, USDbn 24.1 26.0 27.8 29.1
Real GDP growth, % y-o-y 1.2 1.6 2.6 3.0
Consumer price inflation, % y-o-y, eop 7.2 5.6 6.5

Table of Contents

Executive Summary
Core Views
Major Forecast Changes
Key Risks To Outlook
Chapter 1: Political Outlook
SWOT Analysis
BMI Political Risk Ratings
Domestic Politics
Ruling Coalition Likely To Face Stiff Challenge In 2015 Elections
Table: Political Overview
Chapter 2: Economic Outlook
SWOT Analysis
BMI Economic Risk Ratings
Economic Activity
Improving Business Confidence To See Economic Recovery Gain Steam
Table: Economic Activity
Fiscal Policy
Budget Deficit To Peak In 2014
Table: Fiscal Policy
Monetary Policy
Rising Core Inflation To Prompt Rate Hikes By Year-End
Table: Monetary Policy
Exchange Rate Policy
TTD: Sideways Trading Through 2014
Table: Exchange Rate
Balance Of Payments
External Position To Strengthen On Robust Export Performance
Table: Current Account
Chapter 3: 10-Year Forecast
The Trinidad & Tobago Economy To 2023
Major Challenges Remain
Table: Long-Term Macroeconomic Forecasts
Chapter 4: Business Environment
SWOT Analysis
BMI Business Environment Risk Ratings
Business Environment Outlook
Table: BMI Business And Operation Risk Ratings
Table: BMI Legal Framework Rating
Table: Labour Force Quality
Table: Trade And Investment Ratings
Operational Risk
Chapter 5: BMI Global Assumptions
Global Outlook
Growth Increasingly Polarised
Table: Global Assumptions
Table: Developed States, Real GDP GrowtH, %
Table: Emerging Markets, Real GDP Growth, %

The Trinidad & Tobago Business Forecast Report helps businesses with market assessment, strategic planning and decision making to promote growth and profitability in The Trinidad & Tobago and is an essential tool for CEOs, Chairmen, Finance Directors/CFOs, Managing Directors, Marketing/Sales Directors with commercial interests in this emerging market..

An influential new analysis of The Trinidad & Tobago's economic, political and financial prospects through end-2017, just published by award-winning forecasters, Business Monitor International (BMI).

Key Uses

  • Forecast the pace and stability of The Trinidad & Tobago's economic and industry growth through end-2017.
  • Identify and evaluate adverse political and economic trends, to facilitate risk mitigation.
  • Assess the critical shortcomings of the business environment that pose hidden barriers and costs to corporate profitability.
  • ContextualiseThe Trinidad & Tobago's country risks against regional peers using BMI's country comparative Risk Ratings system.
  • Evaluate external threats to doing business in The Trinidad & Tobago, including currency volatility, the commodity price boom and protectionist policies.

The Trinidad & Tobago Business Forecast Report by Business Monitor International (BMI) includes three major sections: Economic Outlook, Political Outlook and Business Environment.

Economic Outlook:

How will the Trinidadian economic policy-making and performance impact on corporate profitability over 2013-2017?

BMI provides our fully independent 5-year forecasts for The Trinidad & Tobago through end-2017 for more than 50 economic and key industry indicators. We evaluate growth, and also forecast the impact of economic management.

Economic Outlook Contents

The Trinidad & Tobago Business Forecast Report features BMI's forecasts with supporting analysis for 2013 through to end-2017, set against government views and BMI's evaluation of global and regional prospects.

Key Areas Covered:


  • Full 10-year forecasts with data - for key macroeconomic variables including GDP (real growth and per capita), population, inflation, current account balance and the exchange rate.
  • BMI's comprehensive Risk Ratings system - rates each country worldwide for economic and political risk, and rates the business environment, within a global and regional context.

Written Analysis:

  • Economic Activity - real GDP growth, employment, inflation, consumption (retail sales and confidence).
  • Balance of Payments - trade and investment, current and capital account.
  • Monetary Policy - interest rate trends (bank lending and deposit rates) and inflation (producer price and consumer price).
  • Exchange Rate Policy - currency controls, foreign investment flows, exchange rates and foreign exchange reserves.
  • Fiscal Policy - macroeconomic strategy and policies, government finance and tax reforms.
  • Foreign Direct Investment - approvals, inflows and climate.
  • External Debt - debt profile (short and long-term plus public and private sector exposure).
  • Global Assumptions - forecasts for each year to end-2017 covering: major commodities, growth in key regions, inflation, and interest and exchange rates, in the United States, Japan, China and the eurozone.

Key Benefits

  • Rely upon BMI's 100% independent forecast scenarios for The Trinidad & Tobago and underlying assumptions - we take no advertising and are privately-owned.
  • Exploit the benefits of BMI's comprehensive and reliable macroeconomic database on The Trinidad & Tobago, sourced and fully maintained by BMI from an extensive network of private sector, government and multilateral contacts.
  • Gain key insights into the current and future direction of government economic policy, which could significantly affect your company's business prospects, from BMI's team of analysts and economists.

Political Outlook:

What are the political risks to doing business in The Trinidad & Tobago over the next 5-years?

BMI's The Trinidad & Tobago country Risk Ratings evaluate the short- and medium-term threats to political stability.

Political Outlook Contents

  • SWOT Analysis for the Trinidadian Market - Political Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats facing The Trinidad & Tobago.
  • Political Stability and Risk Assessment - BMI's Risk Ratings assess explicit short- and long-term risks to political stability; latest ratings, rankings and trends for The Trinidad & Tobago's risk are compared with regional and global averages.
  • Current Administration and Policy-making BMI assesses the threats to the continuity of economic policy, and likely changes to the business operating environment.

Key Benefits

  • Benchmark The Trinidad & Tobago's risk profile against its neighbours, the global and regional average, allowing easy comparison of risks between key business markets.
  • Identify, evaluate and anticipate political and security risks to the business environment, and to your company's current operations and future plans.
  • Gain valuable insights into government and policy-making, through BMI's specialist team of analysts and economists, and their network of private and public sector sources.

Business Environment

Business Environment Risk Ratings with SWOT Analysis - Business environment Risk Ratings for he Trinidad & Tobago, benchmarked against ratings for regional neighbours.

Country Competitiveness - Competitiveness of The Trinidad & Tobago's business operating environment in supporting corporate growth and profitability, compared with regional neighbours.

Business Environment Contents

  • Domestic Environment - Transparency, cronyism and corruption; labour market flexibility; corporate tax burden; interest rate levels; sophistication of banking sector and stock market; levels of business confidence; infrastructure and IT.
  • Foreign Direct Investment - Analysis of foreign investment regime; foreign ownership laws; attractiveness of business environment to foreign investors.
  • Foreign Trade - Analysis of trading environment, government trade policy, liberalisation measures, tariffs and membership of trade areas.

Key Benefits

  • Assess your company's evolving exposure to country specific operational and business risks, using BMI's in-depth analysis of the legal and regulatory business environment.
  • Understand your market's comparative strengths and weaknesses in the key areas of commercial infrastructure and business institutions, using BMI's proprietary global Business Environment Risk Ratings.

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The sections that I find most interesting and useful are the macroeconomic data and forecasts for the country, top export destinations and economic activity. The indicators/analysis of these areas helps us orient our thinking, our assumptions and, consequently, our decisions in the commercial area.

Country Manager, DHL Express