This volume aims to illustrate the uniqueness of the economies of the countries and territories of the Caribbean as well as the similarities they share with other regions. While most countries in the region share many of the characteristics of middle-income countries, theirs is a matter of extremes. Their generally small size suggests a fragility not found elsewhere. While much of the world is beginning to feel some effects of climate change, the Caribbean is ground zero. These factors suggest a difficult road ahead, but the chapters presented in this volume aim to help to spur the search for creative solutions to the region’s problems.

The chapters, written by expert contributors, examine the Caribbean economies from several perspectives. Many break new ground in questioning past policy mindsets, while developing new approaches to many of the traditional constraints limiting growth in the region.

The volume is organized in four sections. Part I examines commonalities, including issues surrounding small economies, tourism, climate change and energy security. Part II looks at obstacles to sustained progress, for example debt, natural disasters and crime. In Part III chapters consider the specific role of external influences, including the USA and the European Union, the People's Republic of China, as well as regional co-operation. The volume concludes in Part IV with country case studies intended to provide a sense of the diversity that runs through the region.

1. Introduction

Robert E. Looney

Part I Commonalities

2. An Alternative Policy Approach to Growth and Stabilization in Small Open Economies

DeLisle Worrell

3. Impacts of Climate Change on Caribbean Economies

Masaō I. Ashtine

4. Caribbean Energy Security: Regional Profile and Challenges to Integration

David Goldwyn and Cory Gill

5. The Caribbean Holds Its Own in Global Tourism Competition

DeLisle Worrell

6. CARICOM and that Vexing Issue of Size and Viability

Patsy Lewis


Part II Obstacles to Sustained Progress

7. Debt and Fiscal Constraints

Lester Henry

8. Crime, Violence, and Drugs in the Caribbean

Sherill V. C. Morris-Francis

9. It’s Complicated: The Caribbean’s Relationship to White-Collar Crime

Kristina Hinds

10. Caribbean Natural Disasters and Country/Regional Responses

Robert E. Looney

11. Why and How to Use Fiscal Policy to Target the Exchange Rate

DeLisle Worrell

Part III External Influences

12. Venezuela: The Descent into a ‘Soft State’

Anthony P. Maingot

13. The External Economic Relations of the Caribbean: The United States and Europe Union Compared

Ginelle Greene-Dewasmes and Tony Heron

14. China’s Increasing Influence in Central America and the Caribbean

Richard L. Bernal

15. Regional Cooperation in Latin America and the Caribbean: New Challenges and Agendas

Cintia Quiliconi and Renato Rivera Rhon

Part IV Country Case Studies

16. The Puerto Rican Economy

Brad Setser and Sergio Marxuach

17. Haiti

Wenche Iren Hauge

18. The Cuban Economy: Socialist Stagnation with Caribbean Characteristics

Richard E. Feinberg

19. Trinidad and Tobago

Lester Henry

20. Belize

Victor Bulmer-Thomas

21. Guyana and the Advent of World-class Petroleum Finds

Clive Y. Thomas

22. Development and Underperformance in the Barbados Economy, 1946-2018

DeLisle Worrell

23. Suriname

Scott B. MacDonald

24. The Bahamas: Facing a Period of Climate Change and Slow Growth

Robert E. Looney

25. The Cayman Islands

Scott B. MacDonald

26. Guadeloupe and Martinique in the Caribbean Basin: A Comparative Analysis of Models and Trajectories

Alain Maurin and Patrick Kent Watson

27. The Dominican Republic

Susan Pozo and Antonio María Giraldi

28. The Jamaican Economy: A Caribbean Success Story at Last?

Keith Collister and Robert E. Looney

29. The Dutch Caribbean

Scott B. MacDonald