Suriname Trade
Basic data
Capital Paramaribo
Population 595795
Language Dutch, Sranan Tongo, English
Religion Protestant 25.6%, Catholic 21.6%, Hindu 22.3%, Islam 13.9%
State system Republic
Head of State Chan Santokhi
Head of government Chan Santokhi
Currency name Surinamese dollar (SRD)
Travel
Time shift -4 hours (-5 hours in summer)
Economy 2021
Nominal GDP (billion USD) 10
Economic growth (%) -1.5
Inflation (%) 58.6
Unemployment (%) ON

In 2021, Suriname saw its GDP decline by 1.5%

The basis of the economy remains the mining of gold, platinum and precious stones, the export of which represents approximately 60% of all exports of the country. Gold mining is dominated by companies from the USA and Canada, however, the largest importer of SR gold is the United Arab Emirates, followed by Switzerland and the USA. Diamonds generally go to Belgium. The importance of bauxite in the composition of exports has significantly decreased compared to before, not because of a lack of resources, but because of a decrease in profitability at the current low world prices. Suriname’s deep structural economies continue to persist, making it chronically sluggish and dependent on commodity exports. It is estimated that up to 60% of gold mining goes to the gray economy, semi-legal or mostly illegal small companies, which also devastate the environment by discharging mercury into rivers, etc. The biggest culprits are allegedly the Brazilians, who migrate illegally to Suriname for this purpose, followed closely by miners from French Guiana, whose own country is capable of stricter supervision and some sort of environmental protection laws, and in neighboring Suriname they have a freer field for nefarious activity. The decline in exports of bauxite and gold in recent years has led the government to try to diversify exports, the main commodities being rice, bananas, vegetables, fish and shrimp. In perspective, the country should reduce its dependence on the export of raw materials, both due to the volatility of world prices and the absolutely dominating export of goods with low added value, in the almost complete absence of its own manufacturing industry. In a country that is 95% covered by virgin forest, wood and wood products account for less than 1% of exports, while three times as much of this commodity is imported.

Trade and investment

Subchapters:

  • Business Relationships
  • Foreign direct investment
  • FTAs ​​and Treaties
  • Development Cooperation
  • Prospective fields of study (MOP)

Business relations

Trade relations with the EU

Sutrinam mainly imports from the EU: Engineering products, means of transport, fuels and lubricants, foodstuffs.

Exports: Gold, oil, wood and rice.

2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Exports from the EU (million EUR) 271.8 291.1 340.6 300.3 319.8
Imports into the EU (million EUR) 222.2 171.6 198.9 105.4 133
Balance with the EU (million EUR) -49.7 -119.5 -141.7 -194.9 -186.8

Source: European Commission

Trade relations with the Czech Republic

Suriname ranks 169th as a recipient of Czech exports and 132nd as an exporter to the Czech Republic. The commercial significance is completely marginal.

2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Exports from the Czech Republic (billion CZK) 0 0 0 0.1 0.2
Imports to the Czech Republic (billion CZK) 0 0 0 0 0.3
Balance with the Czech Republic (billion CZK) 0 0 0 -0.1 -0.1

Source: businesscarriers.com

Trade relations with countries outside the EU

Main recipients of Suriname’s exports: United Arab y, Belgium, USA, China

Main exporters to Suriname: USA, Trinidad and Tobago, Holland, China

2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Exports from countries outside the EU (million EUR) ON ON ON ON ON
Imports to countries outside the EU (million EUR) ON ON ON ON ON
Balance with non-EU countries (million EUR) ON ON ON ON ON

Source: EIU, Eurostat

Foreign direct investment

In December 2021, the IMF approved a 36-month loan for Suriname of US$473 million, representing 14% of Suriname’s annual GDP.

Foreign direct investment in Suriname: data is still incomplete. They fell significantly in 2021, according to Trading Economics.

Foreign exchange reserves increased considerably in 2021 and reached USD 907 million.

FTAs and treaties

Mutual trade and economic relations between the Czech Republic and Suriname are not contractually regulated.

Suriname has been a member of the WTO since 1999, and has been a member of the GATT since 1978.

Developmental cooperation

Suriname has a long-term interest in development cooperation. The EU allocates the country the National Indicative Program (NIP) for the years 2014-2020 in the amount of EUR 1million, which is managed by the EU Delegation in Georgetown. 94% of NIP funds are intended for programs related to sustainable agriculture and 6% for technical cooperation.

In the previous six-year period (2007-2013), cooperation focused on road infrastructure. The EU continues to conduct a regular political dialogue with Suriname, the main themes of which are LP and good governance.

Prospective fields of study (MOP)

Perspective field 1

Engineering industry: Especially woodworking machinery.

Perspective field 2

Mining, quarrying and petroleum industry: Exploration and extraction of non-metallic raw materials.

Perspective field 3

Energy industry: E.g. deliveries within projects of electricity generation from water sources, prospective exploration and extraction of new oil and gas deposits, construction of wind power plants.

Suriname Trade