Dominica: Country Profile (as of July 2021)



The economy and people of Dominica, still reeling from the impact of Hurricanes Irma and Maria, have been hit hard by the COVID-19 crisis. The sudden stop in tourism, which contributes 36.3 per cent of total GDP and makes up 32.9 per cent of total employment, has had a serious impact on jobs and livelihoods. In a recent survey, 58 per cent of respondents reported job losses or reduced incomes during the pandemic, while 59 per cent reported increases in food prices, both phenomena which will likely result in the deterioration of an already dire livelihood and food security situation in the country.

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Unemployment, poverty and inequality are expected to have risen drastically after Hurricane Maria in 2017, given the devastation to livelihood sources such as agriculture, fisheries and tourism. It is estimated that a proportional drop in income as high as -41 per cent may have occurred in the aftermath of the storm, contributing to a decline in the overall quality of life between 20-36 per cent across parishes, with rural communities and indigenous peoples most affected.


More than 40 per cent of the population is vulnerable to food insecurity, especially the working poor, farmers and fisherfolk and indigenous peoples; some 24,000 people faced severe food insecurity after Hurricane Maria. Food production is sensitive to climate change and natural hazards, with drought having caused significant losses in agriculture in the recent past (18 per cent of GDP in 2010). Moreover, Dominica’s dependence on imported foods exposes people to the volatility of international food prices.


Dominica has one of the highest net emigration rates in the world. Underemployment has significantly contributed to the exodus of its productive population (i.e. ‘brain drain’), which has only been exacerbated after Hurricane Maria. Remittances are an important source of support for Dominicans (7.6 per cent, personal remittances received as a percentage of GDP), making them vulnerable to fluctuations in remittance flows


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