Small island economies : Phosphate exports form Nauru

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Infrastructure upgrades will likely be the primary drivers of growth over the next 2 years. The September 2012 reopening of the Regional Processing Centre (RPC) in Nauru for asylum seekers attempting to enter Australia without authorization is projected to boost economic growth to 8% in FY2013 and FY2014 through its impact on construction, hotels and accommodation, restaurants, and retail trade, as well as on government finances. The RPC, which currently holds around 400 refugees and directly employs 200 Nauruans in a population of 10,086, is expanding to a capacity of 1,500 asylum seekers. Partial repayment of government salaries in arrears, equivalent to 1.3% of GDP and funded by RPC-related revenues, will likely boost domestic consumption. Meanwhile, the government expects phosphate production to slow from 519,000 tons in FY2012 to 450,000 tons in FY2013 because of poor weather and disruptions caused by the RPC’s commandeering of mining equipment to clear land for construction (Figure 3.38.4). The phosphate industry employs about 700 Nauruans. Sources: Republic of Nauru Phosphate Company; Nauru Bureau of Statistics ( http://www.naurugov.nr/government/departments/department-of-finance-and-economic-planning.aspx )
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