Peru is a South American country in western South America. It takes pride in being home to the world-famous Amazon rainforest and the Andes Mountains. Lima is Peru's capital city. The country's economy is one of the world's fastest growing. Peru's free trade agreement with the United States, which was signed in 2006, has resulted in further economic growth in the country. Peru's total GDP is currently $458.389 billion, with industries such as mining, manufacturing, fishing, and tourism driving the country's economy.
Peru is a global leader in the production of lead, copper, gold, and zinc, all of which are exported in large quantities. The mineral-rich areas of Peru are located within the Andes Mountains, where mining has been practiced for thousands of years. Mineral resources accounted for roughly half of Peruvian exports in 2000. Gold is the country's most important mining resource. The most important sources of Peruvian gold are two gold mines, Yanacocha and Pierina. They also generate the most revenue in comparison to Peru's other gold reserves. The country has gold and copper reserves worth millions of dollars. Peruvian silver mining dates back to pre-Columbian times. The mining industry faces a number of challenges, including fluctuations in market prices, which result in a decrease in revenue.
Peru's fishing industry supplies 10% of the world's fish consumption. The sector was government-owned until 1994. Following that, the Peruvian government transferred ownership of the fishing industry to the private sector. Peruvian fishing increased due to two factors: whaling in the nineteenth century and increased demand for bird dung (a byproduct of fish found in the small islands off the coast). In 2000, the country caught 10 billion tons of fish and exported $1 billion in fish products. However, Peruvian fish meal exports to Europe fell by 41% in 2001 as a result of a European Union ban on animal products sold in Europe in 2001. El Nino events pose a significant challenge to the fishing industry. During El Ninos years in Peru, the fishing industry contributes only 1% of the country's economy. Anchovies make up the majority of the fish caught and are used to make fish meals and products.
Tourism is another important industry in Peru. Since the 1990s, both the government and the private sector have worked to expand this industry. As a result, sector revenue increased from $90,000 in the 1990s to around US$1,000,000 in 2001. Between 2000 and 2005, approximately $300 million was spent on the construction of new hotels. Tourism developments have resulted in the creation of approximately one million jobs in Peru.
Ecotourism and heritage tourism have been the two tourism focus areas. Ecotourism is concerned with the preservation of natural environments, including wildlife and rare plant and animal species. Heritage tourism, on the other hand, refers to tourist attractions that highlight a country's history and culture. Peru's tourist attractions include the Andes Mountains, the Amazon Rain Forest, the Colca Canyon, and Machu Picchu. Many tourists visit Peru to see the famous Inca city of Machu Picchu. Furthermore, the Amazon rain forest attracts a large number of ecotourists. The pressure on archeological sites and rainforests, which leads to the destruction of tourist sites, is one of the challenges facing Peru's tourism sector.
Manufacturing accounts for 20% of the country's GDP. Peru used to export the majority of its raw materials. However, raw materials are now processed to add value before they are transported. The textile industry, which exports clothing to Europe and the United States, is an example of a value-added industry. In 2000, the textiles sector exported clothes worth US$ 700 million to the United States and Europe, making it the industry's most promising sector. Peru signed a treaty with the European Union that resulted in duty-free exports to its member countries. The pact's primary goal was to aid in the suppression of the drug trade.