Puerto Rico’s economy may not be as large as it was in 2006 until 2034, according to a new study by a prominent economic consulting firm.
The territory’s economy has shrunk by about a fifth since the spring of 2006.
The report gives three scenarios for Puerto Rico’s economy, ranging from optimistic to pessimistic. The economy not reaching its 2006 size until 2034 is within the pessimistic scenario. Under it, the projection is that the economy will not begin to recover until 2026.
Estudios Technicos did the report on the economy through 2030 for the Puerto Rico Department of Economic Development and Commerce. Firm head Joaquin Villamil, the dean of Puerto Rico economists, revealed results in remarks to a local marketing association.
In the intermediate course, further economic decline of 1.8% was forecast through 2020, with growth of 1.1% from 2021 through 2025 and expansion of 1.9% from 2026 through 2030.
In the best case, there would be growth of 3.4% from 2026 through 2030.
Among drags on the economy will be decreased government spending, the study concluded.
It also estimated that the island’s population, more than 3.8 million a dozen years ago and closer to 3.4 million now, could fall to 2.9 million by 2030 in the negative scenario.
In the intermediate projection, the population would ‘only’ go down to 3.1 million by 2030.
Villamil stressed that, in any case, in the near term the situation remains negative and it will be years before the economy grows again.
After criticism that Estudios Technicos was being too negative, respected economic Elias Gutierrez – not associated with Estudios Technicos – also foresaw continued economic decline and a long road to recovery.
After Villamil disclosed results of his study, the Puerto Rico Institute of Statistics yesterday on Sunday released data confirming that net migration of Puerto Ricans from the territory to a State was about 64,000 in 2016, about the same as in 2015. Some 89,000 people moved away in 2015, with about 25,000 relocating to the islands.
Between 2006 and 2015, the population loss due to migration to a State was 455,000, according to the government agency.
From 1945 through 1960, relocation to a State from Puerto Rico, less movement to the islands, was about 500,000.
Much of the migration in this period was to New York. In 2015, the five States that had the largest net movement of Puerto Ricans were Florida, Texas, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Connecticut.