Economy, Manufacturing and Mining
maquiladoras, industrialized nation, small gold, gypsum, civil war
Since the 1940s, El Salvador has been the most industrialized nation in Central America. The country’s first steel-rolling mill opened in 1966. Although the civil war of the 1980s damaged its industries, by 2000 manufacturing accounted for 23 percent of the GDP. El Salvador’s factories supply mostly domestic and Central American markets, although new assembly plants (maquiladoras) have begun to export beyond the region. Textiles, leather goods, clothing, processed food, tobacco, furniture, wood and metal products, and chemicals are the principal manufactures.
The civil war disrupted the small gold and silver mining operations in the country. Mineral extraction is limited to limestone, gypsum, sea salt, and other construction materials.
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