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Perus gross domestic product in the late 1980s was 196 billion or about 920 per capita Although the economy remains primarily agricultural the mining and fishing industries have become increasingly important Peru relies primarily on the export of raw materials--chiefly minerals farm products and fish meal--to earn foreign exchange for importing machinery and manufactured goods During the late 1980s guerrilla violence rampant inflation chronic budget deficits and drought combined to drive the country to the brink of fiscal insolvency However in 1990 the government imposed an austerity program that removed price controls and ended subsidies on many basic items and allowed the inti the national currency to float against the United States dollar About 35 percent of Perus working population is engaged in farming Most of the coastal area is devoted to the raising of export crops on the montaa and the sierra are mainly grown crops for local consumption Many farms in Peru are very small and are used to produce subsistence crops the country also has large cooperative farms The chief agricultural products together with the approximate annual yield in metric tons in the late 1980s were sugarcane 62 million potatoes 2 million rice 11 million corn 880000 seed cotton 280000 coffee 103000 and wheat 134000 Peru is the worlds leading grower of coca from which the drug cocaine is refined The livestock population included about 39 million cattle 133 million sheep 17 million goats 24 million hogs 875000 horses and mules and 52 million poultry Llamas sheep and vicuas provide wool hides and skins The forests covering 54 percent of Perus land area have not been significantly exploited Forest products include balsa lumber and balata gum rubber and a variety of medicinal plants Notable among the latter is the cinchona plant from which quinine is derived The annual roundwood harvest in the late 1980s was 77 million cu m
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