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Introduction - Dominica:
BackgroundDominica was the last of the Caribbean islands to be colonized by Europeans due chiefly to the fierce resistance of the native Caribs. France ceded possession to Great Britain in 1763, which made the island a colony in 1805. In 1980, two years after independence, Dominicas fortunes improved when a corrupt and tyrannical administration was replaced by that of Mary Eugenia CHARLES, the first female prime minister in the Caribbean, who remained in office for 15 years. Some 3,000 Carib Indians still living on Dominica are the only pre-Columbian population remaining in the eastern Caribbean.
Location - Dominica:
LocationCaribbean, island between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, about one-half of the way from Puerto Rico to Trinidad and Tobago
Geographic coordinates15 25 N, 61 20 W
Map referencesCentral America and the Caribbean
Areatotal: 754 sq km
land: 754 sq km
water: 0 sq km
Area comparativeslightly more than four times the size of Washington, DC
Land boundaries0 km
Coastline148 km
Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climatetropical; moderated by northeast trade winds; heavy rainfall
Terrainrugged mountains of volcanic origin
Elevation extremeslowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
highest point: Morne Diablatins 1,447 m
Natural resourcestimber, hydropower, arable land
Land usearable land: 6.67%
permanent crops: 21.33%
other: 72% (2005)
Irrigated landNA
Natural hazardsflash floods are a constant threat; destructive hurricanes can be expected during the late summer months
Environment current issuesNA
Environment international agreementsparty to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography noteknown as The Nature Island of the Caribbean due to its spectacular, lush, and varied flora and fauna, which are protected by an extensive natural park system; the most mountainous of the Lesser Antilles, its volcanic peaks are cones of lava craters and include Boiling Lake, the second-largest, thermally active lake in the world
People - Dominica:
Population72,386 (July 2007 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 25.6% (male 9,481/female 9,048)
15-64 years: 64.2% (male 23,822/female 22,656)
65 years and over: 10.2% (male 3,165/female 4,214) (2007 est.)
Median agetotal: 29.1 years
male: 28.7 years
female: 29.6 years (2007 est.)
Population growth rate0.184% (2007 est.)
Birth rate15.75 births/1,000 population (2007 est.)
Death rate8.44 deaths/1,000 population (2007 est.)
Net migration rate-5.47 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2007 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.048 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.051 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.751 male(s)/female
total population: 1.015 male(s)/female (2007 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 14.61 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 19.68 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 9.29 deaths/1,000 live births (2007 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 75.1 years
male: 72.17 years
female: 78.18 years (2007 est.)
Total fertility rate2.12 children born/woman (2007 est.)
Hiv aids adult prevalence rateNA
Hiv aids people living with hiv aidsNA
Hiv aids deathsNA
Nationalitynoun: Dominican(s)
adjective: Dominican
Ethnic groupsblack 86.8%, mixed 8.9%, Carib Amerindian 2.9%, white 0.8%, other 0.7% (2001 census)
ReligionsRoman Catholic 61.4%, Seventh Day Adventist 6%, Pentecostal 5.6%, Baptist 4.1%, Methodist 3.7%, Church of God 1.2%, Jehovahs Witnesses 1.2%, other Christian 7.7%, Rastafarian 1.3%, other or unspecified 1.6%, none 6.1% (2001 census)
LanguagesEnglish (official), French patois
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over has ever attended school
total population: 94%
male: 94%
female: 94% (2003 est.)
Government - Dominica:
Country nameconventional long form: Commonwealth of Dominica
conventional short form: Dominica
Government typeparliamentary democracy
Capitalname: Roseau
geographic coordinates: 15 18 N, 61 24 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions10 parishes; Saint Andrew, Saint David, Saint George, Saint John, Saint Joseph, Saint Luke, Saint Mark, Saint Patrick, Saint Paul, Saint Peter
Independence3 November 1978 (from UK)
National holidayIndependence Day, 3 November (1978)
Constitution3 November 1978
Legal systembased on English common law
Suffrage18 years of age; universal
Executive branchchief of state: President Nicholas J. O. LIVERPOOL (since October 2003)
head of government: Prime Minister Roosevelt SKERRIT (since 8 January 2004)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister
elections: president elected by the House of Assembly for a five-year term; election last held 1 October 2003 (next to be held in October 2008); prime minister appointed by the president
election results: Nicholas LIVERPOOL elected president; percent of legislative vote - NA%
Legislative branchunicameral House of Assembly (30 seats; 9 members appointed, 21 elected by popular vote; to serve five-year terms)
elections: last held 5 May 2005 (next to be held by 5 August 2010); note - tradition dictates that the election will be held within five years of the last election, but technically it is five years from the first seating of parliament (12 May 2005) plus a 90-day grace period
election results: percent of vote by party - DLP 52.1%, UWP 43.6%, DFP 3.2%, other 1.1%; seats by party - DLP 12, UWP 8, independent 1
Judicial branchEastern Caribbean Supreme Court, consisting of the Court of Appeal and the High Court (located in Saint Lucia; one of the six judges must reside in Dominica and preside over the Court of Summary Jurisdiction)
Political parties and leadersDominica Freedom Party or DFP [Charles SAVARIN]; Dominica Labor Party or DLP [Roosevelt SKERRIT]; Dominica United Workers Party or UWP [Earl WILLIAMS]
Political pressure groups and leadersDominica Liberation Movement or DLM (a small leftist party)
International organization participationACCT, ACP, C, Caricom, CDB, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO (subscriber), ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NAM, OAS, OECS, OIF, OPANAL, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the uschief of mission: vacant
chancery: 3216 New Mexico Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20016
telephone: [1] (202) 364-6781
FAX: [1] (202) 364-6791
consulate(s) general: New York
Diplomatic representation from the usthe US does not have an embassy in Dominica; the US Ambassador to Barbados is accredited to Dominica
Flag descriptiongreen, with a centered cross of three equal bands - the vertical part is yellow (hoist side), black, and white and the horizontal part is yellow (top), black, and white; superimposed in the center of the cross is a red disk bearing a sisserou parrot encircled by 10 green, five-pointed stars edged in yellow; the 10 stars represent the 10 administrative divisions (parishes)
Economy - Dominica:
Economy overviewThe Dominican economy depends on agriculture, primarily bananas, and remains highly vulnerable to climatic conditions and international economic developments. Tourism has increased as the government seeks to promote Dominica as an ecotourism destination. Development of the tourism industry remains difficult, however, because of the rugged coastline, lack of beaches, and the absence of an international airport. The government began a comprehensive restructuring of the economy in 2003 - including elimination of price controls, privatization of the state banana company, and tax increases - to address Dominicas economic crisis and to meet IMF targets. In order to diversify the islands production base, the government is attempting to develop an offshore financial sector and is planning to construct an oil refinery on the eastern part of the island.
Gdp purchasing power parity $485 million (2006 est.)
Gdp official exchange rate $279 million (2005)
Gdp real growth rate3.1% (2005 est.)
Gdp per capita ppp $3,800 (2005 est.)
Gdp composition by sectoragriculture: 17.7%
industry: 32.8%
services: 49.5% (2004 est.)
Labor force25,000 (1999 est.)
Labor force by occupationagriculture: 40%
industry: 32%
services: 28%
Unemployment rate23% (2000 est.)
Population below poverty line30% (2002 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Inflation rate consumer prices -0.1% (2005 est.)
Budgetrevenues: $73.9 million
expenditures: $84.4 million; including capital expenditures of $NA (2001)
Agriculture productsbananas, citrus, mangoes, root crops, coconuts, cocoa; forest and fishery potential not exploited
Industriessoap, coconut oil, tourism, copra, furniture, cement blocks, shoes
Industrial production growth rate-10% (1997 est.)
Electricity production83.88 million kWh (2004)
Electricity consumption78.01 million kWh (2004)
Electricity exports0 kWh (2004)
Electricity imports0 kWh (2004)
Oil production0 bbl/day (2004)
Oil consumption900 bbl/day (2004 est.)
Oil exportsNA bbl/day
Oil importsNA bbl/day
Oil proved reserves0 bbl
Natural gas production0 cu m (2004 est.)
Natural gas consumption0 cu m (2004 est.)
Exports$74 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)
Exports commoditiesbananas, soap, bay oil, vegetables, grapefruit, oranges
Exports partnersUK 22.7%, Jamaica 10.3%, South Korea 9.1%, Antigua and Barbuda 9%, Guyana 7.6%, China 7.2%, Trinidad and Tobago 4.9%, Saint Lucia 4.1% (2006)
Imports$234 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)
Imports commoditiesmanufactured goods, machinery and equipment, food, chemicals
Imports partnersUS 24.3%, China 21.8%, Trinidad and Tobago 13.2%, South Korea 7.6% (2006)
Debt external$213 million (2004)
Economic aid recipient$29.2 million (2004 est.)
Currency code East Caribbean dollar (XCD)
Exchange ratesEast Caribbean dollars per US dollar - 2.7 (2006), 2.7 (2005), 2.7 (2004), 2.7 (2003), 2.7 (2002)
Communications - Dominica:
Fiscal year1 July - 30 June
Telephones main lines in use21,000 (2004)
Telephones mobile cellular41,800 (2004)
Telephone systemgeneral assessment: NA
domestic: fully automatic network
international: country code - 1-767; microwave radio relay and SHF radiotelephone links to Martinique and Guadeloupe; VHF and UHF radiotelephone links to Saint Lucia
Radio broadcast stationsAM 2, FM 4, shortwave 0 (2003)
Television broadcast stations1 (2004)
Internet country
Internet hosts263 (2006)
Internet users26,000 (2005)
Transportation - Dominica:
Airports2 (2006)
Airports with paved runwaystotal: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2006)
Roadwaystotal: 780 km
paved: 393 km
unpaved: 387 km (1999)
Merchant marinetotal: 48 ships (1000 GRT or over) 634,668 GRT/1,100,558 DWT
by type: bulk carrier 6, cargo 24, chemical tanker 4, container 2, petroleum tanker 6, refrigerated cargo 4, roll on/roll off 1, vehicle carrier 1
foreign-owned: 45 (Estonia 11, Germany 1, Greece 5, Latvia 1, Norway 1, NZ 4, Russia 2, Saudi Arabia 3, Singapore 9, Syria 1, Turkey 3, UAE 2, Ukraine 2) (2006)
Ports and terminalsPortsmouth, Roseau
Military - Dominica:
Military branchesno regular military forces; Commonwealth of Dominica Police Force (includes coast guard) (2006)
Manpower available for military servicemales age 18-49: 18,227 (2005 est.)
Manpower fit for military servicemales age 18-49: 15,136 (2005 est.)
Manpower reaching military service age annuallymales age 18-49: 602 (2005 est.)
Military expenditures percent of gdpNA (2006)
Disputes internationalDominica is the only Caribbean state to challenge Venezuelas sovereignty claim over Aves Island and joins the other island nations in challenging whether the feature sustains human habitation, a criterion under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), which permits Venezuela to extend its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and continental shelf claims over a large portion of the eastern Caribbean Sea
This page was last updated on 16 September, 2007
Source: CIA >>>

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