Exports from Honduras amounted to US$4.3 billion in 2015, up 20.6% since 2011 but down -6% from 2014 to 2015. Honduras top 10 exports accounted for 72.8% of the overall value of its global shipments.
Based on statistics from the International Monetary Fund’s World Economic Outlook Database, Honduras total Gross Domestic Product amounted to $41.1 billion in 2015.
Therefore, exports accounted for about 10.4% of total Honduran economic output.
From a continental perspective, $2 billion worth of goods or 46% of Honduran exports by value were delivered to North American countries while 26.2% were sold to Latin American (excluding Mexico) or Caribbean importers. Honduras shipped another 21.3% worth of goods to customers in the European Union, with 3.1% going to clients in Africa.
Given Honduras population of 8.7 million people, its total $4.3 billion in 2015 exports translates to roughly $490 for every resident in that country.
Honduras unemployment rate was 4.1% in 2015, according to the latest estimates from the Central Intelligence Agency’s World Factbook.
Honduras Top 10 Exports
The following export product groups represent the highest dollar value in Honduran global shipments during 2015. Also shown is the percentage share each export category represents in terms of overall exports from Honduras.
- Coffee, spices: US$938.6 million (22% of total exports)
- Fish: $393.2 million (9.2%)
- Fruits (bananas, melons, pineapples), nuts: $357.4 million (8.4%)
- Electronic equipment: $328.8 million (7.7%)
- Animal/vegetable fats and oils: $270.8 million (6.4%)
- Paper: $240.2 million (5.6%)
- Books, newspapers, pictures: $181.6 million (4.3%)
- Gems, precious metals: $162.1 million (3.8%)
- Plastics: $127.3 million (3%)
- Tobacco: $104.2 million (2.4%)
Books, newspapers and pictures were the fastest-growing among the top 10 export categories, up 2,318% for the 5-year period starting in 2011.
In second place for improving export sales was paper which was up 339.1% led by packing containers.
Honduran exported fish posted the third-fastest gain in value at 172.2%, particularly frozen shrimps and prawns as well as Rock lobsters.
The two declining categories among the top 10 Honduran exports were coffee and spices category with sales slowing by -26.1%, and secondly the gems and precious metals which depreciated by -23.4% particularly gold and precious metal scrap.
The following types of Honduran product shipments represent positive net exports or a trade balance surplus. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports.
In a nutshell, net exports is the amount by which foreign spending on a home country’s goods or services exceeds or lags the home country’s spending on foreign goods or services.
- Coffee, spices: US$934 million (Down by -26.2% since 2011)
- Fish: $377.9 million (Up by 184.4%)
- Fruits, nuts: $310.5 million (Up by 33.1%)
- Animal/vegetable fats and oils: $197.2 million (Up by 124.6%)
- Books, newspapers, pictures: $147.4 million (Down by -438.5%)
- Gems, precious metals: $142.4 million (Down by -29.3%)
- Tobacco: $79.9 million (Up by 74.7%)
- Sugar: $50 million (Up by 29.9%)
- Vegetables: $49 million (Down by -11.9%)
- Ores, slag, ash: $47.1 million (Down by -46.2%)
The Honduras has highly positive net exports in the international trade of coffee and spices like peppers and, to a lesser degree, nutmeg. In turn, these cashflows indicate Honduras’s strong competitive advantages under the coffee and spices product category.
Below are exports from Honduras that result in negative net exports or product trade balance deficits. These negative net exports reveal product categories where foreign spending on home country Honduras’s goods trail Honduran importer spending on foreign products.
- Oil: -US$1.3 billion (Down by -32.7% since 2011)
- Electronic equipment: -$733.3 million (Up by 98.9%)
- Machines, engines, pumps: -$524.7 million (Down by -8.4%)
- Vehicles: -$462.8 million (Up by 7%)
- Pharmaceuticals: -$397 million (Down by -14.2%)
- Plastics: -$250.1 million (Down by -20.3%)
- Cereals: -$225.9 million (Down by -18.4%)
- Other food preparations: -$215.4 million (Up by 18.9%)
- Iron or steel products: -$163.8 million (Up by 45.7%)
- Perfumes, cosmetics: -$149.6 million (Up by 17.2%)
Honduras has highly negative net exports and therefore deep international trade deficits for refined oils, petroleum coke and petroleum gases.
These cashflow deficiencies clearly indicate Honduras’s competitive disadvantages in the international fossil fuel market, but also represent key opportunities for Honduras to improve its position in the global economy through focused innovations especially for alternative energy.
Honduran Export Companies
Not one Honduran corporation ranks among Forbes Global 2000 for 2015.
Wikipedia does list companies from Honduras that engage in international business pursuits. Selected examples are shown below:
- AeroCaribe de Honduras (airliner)
- Aerolíneas Sosa (airliner)
- InterAirports (international airports administrator)
- New York and Honduras Rosario Mining Company (gold, silver)
- Tegu (toys)
Tegucigalpa is the Honduran capital city.
Please note that the results listed above are at the 2-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level.
See also Honduras Top 10 Imports, Coffee Exports by Country and Bananas Exports by Country
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on July 18, 2016
The World Factbook, Country Profiles, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on July 18, 2016
Trade Map, International Trade Centre. Accessed on July 18, 2016
Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on July 18, 2016
Wikipedia, List of Companies of Honduras. Accessed on July 18, 2016
Forbes 2015 Global 2000 rankings, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on July 18, 2016