The smallest country in South America, Suriname is an upper middle income country with a strong performing economy. In fact, it has emerged as one of the Caribbean’s best performing economies over the last decade, due largely to its rich endowment in natural resources and biodiversity.  The country recorded average growth of 4.5 percent for the period 2004-2014 and the per capita income of its population of 530,000 has risen concomitantly to nearly US$9,217 in 2014.

Suriname’s economy is highly concentrated in the extractive industries (gold, oil, and bauxite), which plays a key role in driving growth, employment and government revenues. While high commodity prices have benefited Suriname for several years, reliance on natural resource revenues exposes the country to commodity price fluctuations. Suriname is highly vulnerable to climatic disastersespecially flooding due to rising sea levels, excess rain fall, and recently high force winds. To address these issues, the Government has prioritized economic diversification through broad private sector development, a program to strengthen social services, and better management of disaster risksThe National Development Plan lays out a detailed set of priorities and actions to address economic and climatic vulnerabilities. The Government has reached out to several international development agencies including the World Bank Group (WBG) and bilateral governments to assist in implementing its plan.

With a significant investment pipeline that spans new projects in the gold and oil industries, the medium–term economic outlook for Suriname remains positive. Growth is projected to remain within the range of 2– 3 percent per year.

Last Updated: Sep 08, 2015

The WBG recently re-engaged with the Surinamese authorities after a 30-years hiatus. In September 2011, Suriname became member of the IFC. The Country partnership strategy for the period FY15-19 was approved by the Board on December, 2014.

The new strategy proposes a lending program of about US$ 60 million to support Suriname’s efforts in leveraging and sustaining its economic growth through greater social inclusiveness and economic diversification.

Guided by the priorities of the government’s National Development Plan, the overarching goal of the CPS program is to support Suriname’s efforts to promote a more sustainable, inclusive, and diversified growth model through two areas of engagements:

  • creating a conducive environment for private sector development;
  • and reducing vulnerability to climate change-related floods.

The program also includes a cross cutting theme to improve the capacity to measure and analyze data on poverty and gender for evidence-based policy-making

The CPS was jointly prepared by the Government of Suriname and the World Bank Group, comprised by the World Bank, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA).

In 2012, IFC provided a trade financing credit line of up to US$5 million to boost Surinaamsche Bank’s international trade business. IFC is currently actively exploring investment and advisory opportunities in Suriname.

Last Updated: Sep 08, 2015