The Bahamas - Industry

In 1999, the small industrial sector of the Bahamas only made up about 5 percent of the nation's GDP and 5 percent of employment. Government infrastructure projects and private construction provide the main industrial activity. The 1 shipyard in the Bahamas is at Freeport and it specializes in the repair of passenger or cruise ships. There is limited production of minerals. Sand is dredged off the Bahamas Bank and used for limestone and the production of commercial sand, which supply the local construction industry. There is also limited production of salt for export to the United States.

The pharmaceutical company, PFC Bahamas, produces a small quantity of products for export and the oil company, BORCO, has a refinery in the islands, but these are individual enterprises and do not represent any large industrial presence. There is a substantial brewing industry. Companies such as Bacardi, Inc., distill rum and other spirits in the islands, while other international breweries such as Commonwealth Brewery, produce different beers including the Heineken, Guinness, and Kalik brands.

The construction industry seemed to peak in 1998 with the completion of several new resorts. By 1999, new construction projects had fallen by 15.9 percent, with 817 continuing commercial projects valued at US$123 million. However, private housing completions were up by 18.3 percent with a value of US$112.1 million. This reflects an increasing demand for more upscale housing in the nation.

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