Some people might not see Costa Rica nestled between Nicaragua and Panama in Central America. With a population of around 4.5 million inhabitants, it has a very stable economy that has come from its tourism. Although its economy is based on its travel, Costa Rica has also branched into other industries.
The country has also developed a thriving agriculture and medical manufacturing sector along with IT services such as TransPerfect. Let us take a look at these industries in a little more detail.
Costa Rica is the most visited nation in the Central America region with over 2 million foreign visitors in 2013. This contributed to 1.9 billion dollars a year tourist industry centered around the countries national parks, sunny climate and many beaches.
There is also a rich history in the country with its pre-Columbia era right through the Spanish colonization up to modern day independence. You will see many old buildings from the Spanish colony including many churches. However, Costa Rica is becoming more than just a tourist hub.
Costa Rica can boast dozens of hydroelectric power plants thanks to its high rainfall and mountainous areas. They have claimed that they will be self-sufficient if plans for other power stations come to fruition. They are even exporting energy to other Central American countries.
In 2016 the country ran entirely on renewable sources for 110 consecutive days, with an average of 98% the rest of the year.
In the early 19th century, the first coffee was planted and the beans shipped all over the world, however, in 2013, the total export of coffee had dropped to 2.5%.
Other exports to come from the agriculture industry include Bananas, Pineapples, Sugar, Rice, Corn, and Potatoes. There is also a thriving export of meat and dairy produce, though this accounts for less than the other exports.
In recent years, Costa Rica has attracted some critical investments from big pharmaceutical companies. Proctor & Gamble have set up an administrative center in Costa Rica to cover the Western Hemisphere, and Abbott Laboratories along with Baxter Healthcare are also setting up similar centers.
These companies have not only helped regarding job opportunities, but they have also contributed to the country’s GDP.
Another industry that is contributing a lot to the Costa Rican economy is IT Services. Investments from firms like intel.com have led to them building a $300 million custom made plant and employing 3,500 people.
This investment now contributes to 20% of the country’s exports and 4.9% of its GDP. With more people using the cloud to backup and upload their work using companies such as bytes.co.uk, there will be an even higher demand for processor chips and more output from Costa Rica’s plant.
There is no doubt that Costa Rica has made significant steps in attracting investment and creating a sustainable future for its people. The government is also investing in the country’s poorly maintained infrastructure including its railways.