For a better view on Central Bank of The Bahamas, Update Your Browser.

Monthly Economic and Financial Developments (MEFD) April 2022

Published: Monday May 30th, 2022

Domestic Economic Developments


The domestic economy was further recovered during the month of April, amid ongoing international adjustments to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). Tourism output continued to strengthen, undergirded by improvements in the high value-added air segment and a notable rise in sea traffic, as vaccination efforts progressed and COVID-19 restrictions eased in some of the major source markets. Monetary developments for the month of April revealed an expansion in bank liquidity, as the growth in the deposit base contrasted with the decline in domestic credit. Further, external reserves increased during the review month, supported by net foreign currency inflows from real sector activities.

Real Sector


As major source markets further adjusted to COVID-19 pandemic conditions, initial data indicated that monthly tourism output maintained its growth momentum in April.

Official data provided by the Ministry of Tourism (MOT) revealed that total visitor arrivals by first port of entry was substantially resumed at 623,102 in March, from just 62,765 in the corresponding period of 2021. Contributing to this development, air traffic yielded 147,616, compared to 56,371 in the prior year—regaining 73.2% of the volumes registered in 2019. In addition, sea traffic was reinstated at 475,486, from a mere 6,394 visitors in the previous year, when cruise sailings remained suspended.

Disaggregated by major markets, total arrivals to New Providence amounted to 304,506 in March, from 39,093 in the comparative period of 2021. Underlying this outturn, the air and sea segments both rose to 112,719 and 191,787 visitors, respectively. Similarly, foreign arrivals to Grand Bahama advanced to 27,932 vis-à-vis 1,973 in the preceding year, as air and sea arrivals measured 3,458 and 24,474, respectively. Further, traffic to the Family Islands resumed at 290,664, compared to just 21,699 in the prior year, attributed to gains in the air and sea components, to 31,439 and 259,225, respectively.

On a year-to-date basis, the destination recovered to 1,346,624 arrivals, vis-à-vis 115,894 in the comparative 2021 period, a reversal from a 93.2% contraction recorded in the preceding year. Supporting this outcome, air visitors increased more than three-fold to 321,328 passengers, contrasting with the 70.4% falloff recorded a year earlier, with all major markets improved during the review period. Likewise, sea arrivals recovered to 1,025,296 visitors, following a 99.0% reduction in 2021 (see Table 1).

More recent data provided by the Nassau Airport Development Company Limited (NAD) for the month of April showed that total departures—net of domestic passengers—expanded to 125,061, from 47,332 in the corresponding month of 2021. Specifically, U.S. departures amounted to 106,773 vis-à-vis 45,995 a year earlier, while non-U.S. departures advanced to 18,288 from 1,337 in the preceding year. On a year-to-date basis, total outbound traffic more than tripled to 400,147, from 119,018 passengers in the previous year; a recovery from the 67.9% decline a year earlier. Reflective of this outturn, U.S. departures rose to 342,205, a turnaround from the 63.8% contraction in 2021. Similarly, non-U.S. departures advanced to 57,942, a switch from an 89.2% falloff during the same period of last year.


In the short-term vacation rental market, data provided by AirDNA showed ongoing gains during the month of April. Specifically, total room nights sold firmed to 145,137 from 114,718 in the corresponding 2021 period. Contributing to this outcome, occupancy rates for both entire place and hotel comparable listings increased, to 61.0% and 55.6%, respectively, from 54.5% and 47.7% in the comparative period last year. Further, as depicted in Graph 1, price indicators revealed that year-over-year, the average daily room rate (ADR) for hotel comparable listings moved higher by 13.8% to $196.22 and for entire place listings, by 6.9% to $514.52.


For full text reading, please download the attached document.