From 1979 to 1989 Montserrat was home to a branch of George Martin's AIR Studios which made the island popular with working musicians who often went there to record while taking advantage of the island's climate and beautiful surroundings.
Since the devastations of Hurricane Hugo and the eruption of the Soufriere Hills Volcano, the Montserratian economy has been effectively halted. Export businesses currently based in Montserrat deal primarily in the selling and shipping of aggregate for construction. Imports include virtually everything available for sale on the island.
The island's operating budget is largely supplied by the British government and administered through the Department for International Development (DFID) amounting to approximately £25 million per year. Additional amounts are secured through income and property taxes, license and other fees as well as customs duties levied on imported goods.