Monday, February 19, 2018

IDB study: Drugs and guns big part of T&T economy *


ABOUT one third of the Trinidad and Tobago economy is informal, a new Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) study released yesterday said.

Economist Amos Peters, who authored the study, used different methods to calculate the size of T&T's informal economy and concluded it ranges between 26 and 33 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP).

T&T's GDP, according to the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago's latest Monetary Policy Report released July 21, is $154 billion.

In layman's terms, this means the informal economy, which includes illegal money, under-the-table employment, street vending, narcotics, guns and prostitution, could be moving just over $50 billion.

While acknowledging that that figure is unacceptably high, former Citibank vice president, financial consultant Ved Seereeram said it may have worsened since the IDB completed its study, which looked at data up to 2014.


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