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Basic Information

Area 108,889 km2
Capital Guatemala City
Official Language Spanish
GDP per capita US$4,553
GDP US$ 78.600 billion
Imports US$ 18.253 billion
Exports US$ 11.628 billion
Currency Quetzal

Business Environment

Guatemala neighbors with Mexico on the north, is bounded on the west by the Pacific Ocean, east by the Caribbean and Atlantic and is bordered by El Salvador and Honduras on the south.


The industrial structure of Guatemala has transformed from agriculture to industry and then towards service. The Agricultural output accounts for 13.5% of GDP which are dominated by coffee, sugar, cardamom and bananas. In recent years, the export of vegetables and tropical fruits has increased. The industrial output accounts for 24.2% 18,798,985of GDP. Among them, manufacturing sector accounts for 17.9%. The industry is mainly composed of textile garment processing, food and beverage, chemical, medical and pharmaceutical products.


The output of service sector accounts for 62.3% of GDP, of which, 11.7% is commerce (wholesale and retail). Transportation and warehousing are 10.8%, and finance and insurance and other service sectors are 4.9% and 16% respectively.


The strategy for the future will focus on export expansion, product diversification and decentralized market.

(1) Decentralized market: Seeking and expanding markets is the key for export growth. The industry urges the Congress to pass the free trade agreements in various negotiations in order to enhance the expansion. Based on convenient transportation and logistics, the priority of market expansion and development is given to Mexico, Colombia, Chile, Peru, Dominican Republic, Trinidad and Tobago.

(2) Product diversification: The traditional industries of Guatemala are coffee, sugar, cardamom and bananas. The performance of export of non-traditional products is excellent with annual growth rate of about 17%, including mini vegetables and tropical fruits, ornamental plants and manufacturing (processed food, footwear, chemicals, cosmetics, sanitary products, pharmaceuticals, wood furniture products, leather, handicrafts, building materials, floor tiles, packaging materials, etc.).

(3) Assisting the industry in participating in domestic and international exhibitions in order to strengthen export.

(4) Enhancing enterprises recruitment and attracting foreign investment: organizing international forums in order to attract foreign investment and create jobs.

Top 10 import from Guatemala

Year: 2020
Code USD
(17011400004) Other cane sugar, not containing added flavouring or colouring matter 38,796,150  
(9011100007) Coffee, not roasted, not decaffeinated 14,946,510  
(17019990904) Other sugar, refined 11,715,067  
(3061700510) Whiteleg shrimp (Penaeus vannamei), frozen, smoked included 5,685,046  
(24012090008) Other tobacco, partly or wholly stemmed/stripped 1,136,988  
(74040010104) Waste and scrap, of copper and brass, free of any coated wire and cable 1,091,826  
(3061700404) Shrimp, peeled, frozen, smoked included 816,549  
(61091000006) T-shirts, singlets and other vests, knitted or crocheted, of cotton 754,476  
(8026200005) Macadamia nuts, shelled, fresh or dried 728,536  
(61099020005) T-shirts, singlets and other vests, knitted or crocheted, of man-made fibres 647,298  

Top 10 export to El Guatemala

Year: 2020
Code USD
(38170000007) Mixed alkylbenzenes and mixed alkylnaphthalenes, other than those of heading No.27.07 or 29.02 25,780,539  
(83089010002) Clasps, frames with clasps, buckles, buckle-clasps, of base metal 4,361,914  
(84145100002) Table, floor, wall, window, ceiling or roof fans, with a self-contained electric motor of an output not exceeding 125 w 3,932,647  
(54075200006) Other dyed woven fabrics, containing 85% or more by weight of textured polyester filaments 2,572,499  
(72083930201) Other flat-rolled products of iron or non-alloy steel, hot-rolled, in coils, of a thickness of less than 1.5 mm, containing by weight less than 0.25% of carbon 2,470,056  
(22029990997) Other non-alcoholic beverages water, containing added sugar or other sweetening matter or flavoured (not containing dairy products) 2,418,568  
(87082990007) Other parts and accessories of bodies (including cabs), of the motor vehicles of headings Nos. 87.01 to 87.05 2,119,752  
(87081000007) Bumpers and parts thereof 1,979,508  
(39031100009) Expansible polystyrene 1,974,748  
(40111000105) Radial tyres, of a kind used on motor cars (including station wagons and racing cars) 1,689,011  


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