The Barbados dollar, often denoted by BBD or Bds$, is the national unit of currency of Barbados. The dollar is divided into 100 cents and has had a fixed rate of exchange with the United States Dollar since 1975.
The Barbados dollar was created after the establishment of the Central Bank of Barbados (CBB), which took place in 1972 by Act of parliament. Previously, Barbados and several other Eastern Caribbean islands had been under the Eastern Caribbean Currency Authority (ECCA) and the West Indies dollar was used.
Many coins in circulation of Barbados are struck at the Royal Canadian Mint.
Sovereign credit ratings play an important part in determining a country's access to international capital markets, and the terms of that access. Sovereign ratings help to foster dramatic growth, stability, and efficiency of international and domestic markets.
What does it look like?
Queen Elizabeth II is recognized as Queen of Barbados, and in turn, head of state in the nation. Represented by a Governor General, the Queen is said to be styled "By the Grace of God, Queen of Barbados and of Her other Realms and Territories, Head of the Commonwealth." The present government is proposing that Barbados become a republic within the Commonwealth , with a ceremonial president instead of a Queen.
While the Queen is head of state, executive power lies in the hands of the prime minister and his cabinet. The prime minister is usually the leader of the winning party in the elections for the House of Assembly, which is the lower house of parliament (with 28 seats for members that are elected every five years). The Senate has 21 members, appointed by the governor general.
Barbados is a full and participating member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).
Key Economic Factors Economic Overview
While in the past Barbados' economy was largely dependent on sugarcane cultivation, in recent years things have evolved. In particular, the economy has diversified in the fields of light industry and tourism, as well as finance and information services (which have proven to be important earners of foreign exchange). In terms of policy, the government of Barbados has mostly been targeting unemployment, encouraging foreign direct investment, and trying to privatize remaining state-owned enterprises.
- Industries: Tourism, sugar, light manufacturing, and component assembly for export.
- Agricultural products: Sugarcane, vegetables, and cotton.
- Imports: Consumer goods, machinery, foodstuffs, construction materials, chemicals, fuel, and electrical components.
- Exports: Sugar and molasses, rum, other foods and beverages, chemicals, and electrical components.
- Trading partners: Trinidad and Tobago, United States, United Kingdom, Jamaica, and Japan.