The Northern Marianas economy declined by 20 percent in 2018 due to the destruction from Super Typhoon Yutu that year, a new US Government Accountability Office (GAO) report shows.
The drop in the CNMI's gross domestic product essentially negated gains in 2016 and 2017 when the islands' GDP grew by over 28 percent and 25 percent respectively.
The GAO said the CNMI economy plunged in 2018 due to a sharp drop in tourist spending and casino gaming revenue following the October 2018 typhoon.
The CNMI is currently feeling the pinch from the suspension of multiple flight services from Asia because of the coronavirus outbreak.
The Marianas Visitors Authority has projected zero tourist arrivals from China until the end of the fiscal year and a loss to the local economy of over $US48 million by October.