With GDP per capita at USD 2050 per year (1999), Honduras is one of the poorest countries in the Americas. The economic growth rate is 5% but most of the people are still under poverty line. The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have classified Honduras as one of the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) eligible for debt relief. Honduran currency is Lempira. Agricultural production Honduras, rich in forests and marine resources, is endowed with 1.8 million hectares of cultivable land but agriculture is yet to be developed in its full-fledged and finest form in the country.
With 0.28 ha (hectare) per capita, it is the second largest country in the region in terms of arable land with respect to its population. The northern coast is full of cultivable lands and presents beautiful and scenic greenery with tender crops of banana, sugarcane, palm oil and tropical fruits. The southern belt is also equipped with lands suitable for sugarcane and sorghum production. But the southern regions are prone to recurring droughts.
And people here have to cope up with haphazard cropping patterns. The central agricultural areas are rich with atmospheric conditions suitable for crops of coffee and grains. The country earns substantial amount through agricultural exports and the key agricultural export products are coffee, shrimps, bananas, melon, lobsters and pine apples. However, in recent years, exports of cigars, wooden furniture, processed and fresh vegetables had gradually picked up.
But, on the whole, the contribution of agricultural sector to the GDP has come down drastically from 21.6 percent in the late 1980s to 17 percent in the late 1990s. 5 There are several reasons for this.
Honduras has been quite on and off facing the nature’s fury and the agricultural sector has become a victim of hurricanes and floods causing severe damages to the crops and disturbing the cropping patterns. In fact, the agricultural sector is very wide with crops ranging from coffee, banana, maize, sorghum, beans, rice, tobacco, cantaloupes, citrus, potatoes and pine apples sharing the contributions for the agricultural wealth of the tiny Republic.
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