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PROFILE: US Territory of Puerto Rico



A few Practical Tips for doing business in Puerto Rico

  • Dress professionally.

  • Business meetings normally do not start on time.

  • Handshakes with direct eye contact and welcoming smile is standard.

  • When shaking hands, use appropriate greetings e.g. buenos dias, buenos tardes, buenos noches.

  • Be formal when first meeting someone and don`t use first names unless invited to do so.

  • The official languages are English and Spanish.

  • Don't talk about Puerto Rico's status as US territory since this is a sensitive and controversial topic.

  • For small talk purposes, talk about sports and travel.

  • Individuals generally pride themselves on their hospitality.

Brief History

  • 1493 - Island was claimed by Spain.

  • 1898 - Island was ceded to the US by Spain as a result of the Spanish American War.

  • 1917 - Puerto Ricans were granted US citizenship.

  • 1952 - Constitution was enacted providing for internal self-government. Puerto Rico is not a state, but rather a US territory with commonwealth status.

General Information

  • Government - Territorial Government

  • Capital City - San Juan

  • Governor - Territorial Governor: Pedro Pierluisi

  • Literacy Rate: 92.40%

  • Size: Slightly less than 3 times the size of Rhode Island

  • Population: 3.057 M (2023 est.)

  • Population Growth Rate - 1.29% (2023 est.)

  • Unemployment Rate - 6.0 % (December 2022)

  • GDP - 106.5B (2021 est.)

  • GDP Growth Rate: 0.21% (2021 est.)

  • Labor Force Breakdown – Agriculture - 2.1%, Industry - 19%, Services - 79% (2021)

  • Major Industries - Pharmaceuticals, electronics, apparel, food products, tourism

International Trade


Total Product Exports - 73.17B (2017)

  • Major Product Exports: Packaged medicines, medical cultures/vaccines, hormones, orthopedic and medical appliances, sulfur compounds (2019)

  • Note: Puerto Rico was the US top exporter of pharmaceutical and medicine products in 2022.

  • Major Export Partners (2019)

  • Italy - 16%, Netherlands - 15%, Belgium - 9%, Japan - 8%, Germany - 8%, Austria - 8%, Spain -7%, China -5%

Total Product Imports - 49.01B (2017 est.)

  • Major Product Imports: Nitrogen compounds, sulfur, refined petroleum, medical cultures/vaccines, cars

  • Major Import Partners (2019)

  • Ireland - 38%, Singapore - 9%, Switzerland - 8%, South Korea - 5%

English Language Online News Sites

Sampling of Puerto Rico Companies

Many foreign companies have operations in Puerto Rico, including:

Ecolab, PPG, FMC, Praxair, Heraeus, Eli Lilly, Patheon, Linde, LabChem, Industrial Chemical Corporation, BASF, Proctor & Gamble, GE, Medtronic, Abbott, Eaton, Nike, Johnson Controls, Kellogg, Kraft Heinz, 3M, Trane


National Holidays - 2023

  • January 1 - New Year’s Day

  • January 2 - New Years Holiday

  • January 6 - Epiphany

  • April 7 - Good Friday

  • May 14 - Mother`s Day

  • June 18 - Father`s Day

  • July 4 - US Independence Day

  • July 25 - Puerto Rico Constitution Day

  • November 23 - Thanksgiving Day

  • December 25 - Christmas Day


By Paul Mastilak

InterMark3, Inc.





Opmerkingen


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