International trade as a share of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), or trade-to-GDP ratio as it is more commonly referred to, gives an indication of the relative openness and importance of trade in a country. Expressed as a percentage, the trade-to-GDP ratios are calculated by dividing the aggregate value of imports and exports of goods and services over a period by the GDP for the same period. The ratios are influenced by the factors affecting the numerator, which is trade, and the denominator, which is the GDP. The 14 countries considered in the study were Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.
Figure 1 shows that the four-year (2015–2018) average trade-to-GDP ratios for the Pacific region stands at 110 per cent. The average ratio clearly shows the importance of trade in the region in comparison to the GDP: all Pacific Island Countries and Territories are reliant on trade, some more, some less. GDP and Trade data can also be found on https://stats.pacificdata.org/.
Read the International trade as a share of gross domestic product in selected Pacific economies information paper.