Tourism is the primary economic activity, accounting for 80% of GDP and employment. The islands hosted 2.4 million visitors in 2008. The manufacturing sector consists of petroleum refining, rum distilling, textiles, electronics, pharmaceuticals, and watch assembly. One of the world’s largest petroleum refineries is at Saint Croix. The agricultural sector is small, with most food being imported. International business and financial services are small but growing components of the economy.
The islands are vulnerable to substantial damage from storms. The government is working to improve fiscal discipline, to support construction projects in the private sector, to expand tourist facilities, to reduce crime, and to protect the environment.
Labor force: 50,580 (2012 est.)
Labor force by occupation:
- Agriculture: 1%
- Industry: 19%
- Services: 80% (2003 est.)
Exports: $2.627 billion (2013)
Export commodities: Rum.
Imports: $2.694 billion (2013)
Import commodities: Foodstuffs, consumer goods, building materials.
Currency and exchange: The Virgin Islands use the U.S. dollar
Source: CIA The World Factbook