CEPAL Review

Cepal Review is the leading journal for the study of economic and social development issues in Latin America and the Caribbean. Edited by the Economic Commission for Latin America, each issue focuses on economic trends, industrialization, income distribution, technological development and monetary systems, as well as the implementation of economic reform and transfer of technology. Written in English and Spanish (Revista de la Cepal), each tri-annual issue offers approximately 12 studies and essays undertaken by authoritative experts or gathered from conference proceedings.

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Export competitiveness in an oil and gas economy: the case of Trinidad and Tobago, 1985-2010

The oil and gas sector has led the economy of Trinidad and Tobago since the late 1970s and, more pronouncedly, since 2000, accounting for a large share of gdp, total exports and tax revenue. Its prospects in the medium term could be negatively affected, however, if oil and gas extraction expands in other countries, and if the United States attains energy self-sufficiency. This paper offers an analysis of the evolution and competitiveness of its oil and non-oil exports to both the United States and global markets, based on the revealed comparative advantage (rca) index used by eclac. Other foreign trade indicators are also included to determine the structure of the country’s trading relations. The period from 1985 to 2010 is analysed and the results presented are intended to advocate the diversification of Trinidad and Tobago’s exports into more dynamic and diversified markets.

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