Belize’s Agribusiness and Agro-Processing sector is strategically positioned to offer high quality goods primarily catering to niche markets. Belize’s rich natural resources inclusive of its high availability of arable land (1,998,230 acres), with its location not being within the high hurricane landfall probability belt, offers an ideal location for agribusiness investments. The country’s advantageous position for organic and eco-labelled production, abundant pool of skilled workers, stable foreign exchange rate, welcoming investment climate, and preferential market access to major world markets offers enticing opportunities for Agriculture investments.
Historically, Belize is known for the production and export of traditional crops primarily: Sugar, Citrus and Bananas. These major crops have been the foundation of the Belizean economy since the 1800’s. The main export markets for these products include the European Union, USA, UK, and CARICOM. According to the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB), the Agriculture industry contributed 11% to Belize’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at current prices in 2017, and generated a total of USD $197 million in export revenues in 2018. This vital sector employs an estimated 23,500 persons, equivalent to 14% of Belize’s total labour force (Source: Statistical Institute of Belize, 2018). Statistics continue to show that Belize’s agricultural sector sustains its steady growth.
Belize’s close proximity to the North American, Central American, South American and Caribbean markets offers easy access to top markets. The country benefits from preferential trade agreements with: the European Union, CARICOM nations, USA, Canada, and Guatemala. The Government of Belize continues to strengthen its international relations in an effort to expand its avenues for trade. Moreover, the Agribusiness and Agro-Processing sector is strongly supported by the Government through attractive investment incentives for farming, production and exporting. The investment incentive programs available to support this sector include the Fiscal Incentive (FI) and the Designated Processing Areas (DPA) Programs.
The country’s advantageous Agricultural position allows for endless possibilities for investment. Some of these opportunities include but are not limited to the following:
- Raw Produce Production – traditional or non-traditional agro-produce;
- Organic Raw Produce – through hydroponics or other methodologies;
- Value-addition – through agro-processing of raw agricultural commodities including aquaculture (ready to cook) and livestock (beef/mutton);
- Biofuels – for power generation, ethanol or bio-diesel from agro-produce;
- Input Material Production – e.g., organic fertilizer, packaging materials, etc.;
- Storage and Export-Handling Facilities – for agro-products (mobile and fixed);
- Transportation and Delivery of end produce to consumers (local and export).
Other Investment Opportunities Include:
|Valued Addition||Emerging Opportunities|
|· Cocoa Powder||· Coconut|
|· Organic Chocolate||· Vanilla|
|· Scrubs and Soaps||· Spices|
|· Cacao Liqueur||· Pumpkin Seeds|
For more details on investment opportunities in Belize’s Agribusiness & Agro-processing sector, contact our team at BelizeINVEST, a unit of BELTRAIDE.