According to a first preliminary estimate of the CBS the gross domestic product (GDP) of Bonaire resulted in 364.2 million US Dollars in 2012. As Bonaire counted 16,975 residents that year, the GDP per capita was equivalent to 21 thousand US Dollars.
The GDP per capita is an approximation of the average incomes. In order to compare this figure with that of other countries, it must be corrected for the difference in currency and price level. Usually the US Dollar and the US price level are chosen as a standard. Expressed in that standard the Bonaire GDP was approximately equal to twenty three thousand dollars in 2012.
The GDP per capita of Bonaire is slightly lower than that of Curaçao, St. Maarten and Aruba. On these islands the GDP per capita converted to the US-situation is respectively twenty eight, thirty three and thirty six thousand dollars. In neighboring South American countries the incomes are much lower than in Bonaire. In Venezuela for example, the GDP per capita is seventeen thousand and in Suriname fourteen thousand dollars. In comparison: the values for the Netherlands and the United States are 43 and 49 thousand dollars.
Since the constitutional changes as of October 10th 2010, the CBS in the Netherlands is responsible for the statistics of the islands of the Caribbean Netherlands (Bonaire, Saba and St. Eustatius).
Comparison of the GDP per capita
The figures of the compared islands/countries are from the International Comparison Program (ICP) of the World Bank. Those refer to 2011 and were still compiled in accordance with old guidelines (The SNA 1993). If they were compiled in accordance with the new guidelines, just like that of Bonaire, they would probably be a few percent higher.
Comparability over time
The last year for which a GDP-figure was calculated for Bonaire, was 2008. This calculation was made by the CBS of the Netherlands Antilles. However, the figure for 2012 is not comparable to the 2008 figure for a number of reasons. Firstly, the 2012 GDP was calculated according to the new United Nations guidelines from 2008 (the SNA 2008) , while the figure for 2008 was calculated according to the guidelines from 1993. Furthermore, the constitutional change also brought about certain structural changes in the economy. Thus, the trade with (for example) Curaçao in 2012 was recorded as import and export, while in 2008 that was domestic trade. Also in the processing of government data changes occurred, because the islands of the Caribbean Netherlands are now registered as special municipalities of the Netherlands (public entity).
For the calculation of the Bonaire GDP the CBS conducted a survey among the Bonaire business community. Since not all the results are in yet, the present result is considered a preliminary figure. Later this year, a final figure for the GDP will be published and a GDP figure for the windward islands of the Caribbean Netherlands will also be determined.