Columbus Ate Guava Paste

Cuba is a siren call to investors, although some sectors, such as agriculture, will lag the investment cycle because of deep government involvement. More than 30% of the land mass in Cuba is allocated to crop cultivation. But it is highly inefficient, requiring Havana to import the bulk of its foodstuffs. Enthusiastic dealmakers may see some success in targeting agricultural extension deals such as equipment manufacturing. We suspect that the most successful case studies, however, will be found in food production. Columbus certainly understood the potential. He returned to Europe in 1493 laden with preserved fruit, a hoard which likely included guava paste, a now-common Cuban delicacy.

Learn more at Al Jazeera

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Beyond Caparra

Turn Right for Roseau

To the uninitiated, the Caribbean can be a mind-boggling array of small islands, with a few large ones in the mix.

Man with Cigar

Become a geographer. Florida and the Caribbean have the same economic heft as Brazil. Our regional set includes the perimeter economies of Central America, Colombia, Venezuela, as well as the Guiana Highlands.

Relative Economic Size

Comments on this blog focus on Florida and neighboring trade partners. By output, we rank the major islands:

1. Puerto Rico ($103 billion)

2. Cuba ($78 billion)

3. Dominican Republic ($64 billion)

4. Trinidad and Tobago ($29 billion)

5. Jamaica ($14 billion)

Florida dominates the region with state-wide GDP of about $770 billion. The largest perimeter economy is Colombia at $378 billion, followed by Venezuela.

Note: Ranking is based on GDP data for 2014 at market prices.

Source: World Bank, US Bureau of Economic Analysis, Government Development Bank for Puerto Rico, Cranganore.