Development and Stabilization in Small Open Economies: Theories and Evidence from Caribbean Experience - Synopsis

This book analyses and explains the nature of the economies of small countries and territories. It includes an assessment of material prosperity in 41 small open economies worldwide, with case studies focusing on the Caribbean and Central America, and a review of the development of their economies in recent decades. The volume recommends a suite of economic policy tools for the management of these economies, demonstrating how these may best be employed in economies that live and breathe through international commerce. Among observations of interest is the fact that the devaluation of the local currency of a small nation makes the country worse off; even a currency that maintains its value is little more than a trophy, of little value if it is not readily convertible into US dollars. Also, that while government policies affect international competitiveness and a small country's growth prospects, more important is how governments use additional resources to improve the quality of health and educational services. Moreover, economic windfalls such as the discovery of mineral resources seldom bring prosperity commensurate with their economic value, and never in the short run.