Saint Kitts and Nevis

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Introduction - Saint Kitts and Nevis:


Saint Kitts and Nevis


First settled by the British in 1623, the islands became an associated state with full internal autonomy in 1967. The island of Anguilla rebelled and was allowed to secede in 1971. Saint Kitts and Nevis achieved independence in 1983. In 1998, a vote in Nevis on a referendum to separate from Saint Kitts fell short of the two-thirds majority needed. Nevis continues in its efforts to try and separate from Saint Kitts.

Location - Saint Kitts and Nevis:


Caribbean, islands in the Caribbean Sea, about one-third of the way from Puerto Rico to Trinidad and Tobago

Geographic coordinates

17 20 N, 62 45 W

Map references

Central America and the Caribbean


total: 261 sq km (Saint Kitts 168 sq km; Nevis 93 sq km)
land: 261 sq km
water: 0 sq km

Area comparative

1.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries

0 km


135 km

Maritime claims

territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin


tropical, tempered by constant sea breezes; little seasonal temperature variation; rainy season (May to November)


volcanic with mountainous interiors

Elevation extremes

lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
highest point: Mount Liamuiga 1,156 m

Natural resources

arable land

Land use

arable land: 19.44%
permanent crops: 2.78%
other: 77.78% (2005)

Irrigated land


Natural hazards

hurricanes (July to October)

Environment current issues


Environment international agreements

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography note

with coastlines in the shape of a baseball bat and ball, the two volcanic islands are separated by a three-km-wide channel called The Narrows; on the southern tip of long, baseball bat-shaped Saint Kitts lies the Great Salt Pond; Nevis Peak sits in the center of its almost circular namesake island and its ball shape complements that of its sister island

People - Saint Kitts and Nevis:


39,349 (July 2007 est.)

Age structure

0-14 years: 27.2% (male 5,472/female 5,218)
15-64 years: 64.9% (male 12,779/female 12,752)
65 years and over: 7.9% (male 1,300/female 1,828) (2007 est.)

Median age

total: 28.1 years
male: 27.4 years
female: 28.8 years (2007 est.)

Population growth rate

0.623% (2007 est.)

Birth rate

17.89 births/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Death rate

8.16 deaths/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Net migration rate

-3.51 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.049 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.002 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.711 male(s)/female
total population: 0.988 male(s)/female (2007 est.)

Infant mortality rate

total: 13.74 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 15.44 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 11.93 deaths/1,000 live births (2007 est.)

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 72.66 years
male: 69.81 years
female: 75.69 years (2007 est.)

Total fertility rate

2.29 children born/woman (2007 est.)

Hiv aids adult prevalence rate


Hiv aids people living with hiv aids


Hiv aids deaths



noun: Kittitian(s), Nevisian(s)
adjective: Kittitian, Nevisian

Ethnic groups

predominantly black; some British, Portuguese, and Lebanese


Anglican, other Protestant, Roman Catholic




definition: age 15 and over has ever attended school
total population: 97.8%
male: NA%
female: NA% (2003 est.)

Government - Saint Kitts and Nevis:

Country name

conventional long form: Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis
conventional short form: Saint Kitts and Nevis
former: Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis

Government type

parliamentary democracy


name: Basseterre
geographic coordinates: 17 18 N, 62 43 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions

14 parishes; Christ Church Nichola Town, Saint Anne Sandy Point, Saint George Basseterre, Saint George Gingerland, Saint James Windward, Saint John Capesterre, Saint John Figtree, Saint Mary Cayon, Saint Paul Capesterre, Saint Paul Charlestown, Saint Peter Basseterre, Saint Thomas Lowland, Saint Thomas Middle Island, Trinity Palmetto Point


19 September 1983 (from UK)

National holiday

Independence Day, 19 September (1983)


19 September 1983

Legal system

based on English common law


18 years of age; universal

Executive branch

chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Governor General Cuthbert Montraville SEBASTIAN (since 1 January 1996)
head of government: Prime Minister Dr. Denzil DOUGLAS (since 6 July 1995); Deputy Prime Minister Sam CONDOR (since 6 July 1995)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the governor general in consultation with the prime minister
elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; the governor general is appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or leader of a majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the governor general; deputy prime minister appointed by the governor general

Legislative branch

unicameral National Assembly (14 seats, 3 appointed and 11 popularly elected from single-member constituencies; members serve five-year terms)
elections: last held 25 October 2004 (next to be held by 2009)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - SKNLP 7, CCM 2, NRP 1, PAM 1

Judicial branch

Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (based on Saint Lucia; one judge of the Supreme Court resides in Saint Kitts and Nevis)

Political parties and leaders

Concerned Citizens Movement or CCM [Vance AMORY]; Nevis Reformation Party or NRP [Joseph PARRY]; Peoples Action Movement or PAM [Lindsay GRANT]; Saint Kitts and Nevis Labor Party or SKNLP [Dr. Denzil DOUGLAS]

Political pressure groups and leaders


International organization participation


Diplomatic representation in the us

chief of mission: Ambassador Dr. Izben Cordinal WILLIAMS
chancery: 3216 New Mexico Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20016
telephone: [1] (202) 686-2636
FAX: [1] (202) 686-5740
consulate(s) general: New York

Diplomatic representation from the us

the US does not have an embassy in Saint Kitts and Nevis; the US Ambassador to Barbados is accredited to Saint Kitts and Nevis

Flag description

divided diagonally from the lower hoist side by a broad black band bearing two white, five-pointed stars; the black band is edged in yellow; the upper triangle is green, the lower triangle is red

Economy - Saint Kitts and Nevis:

Economy overview

Sugar was the traditional mainstay of the Saint Kitts economy until the 1970s. The government closed the sugar industry following the 2005 harvest after decades of losses at the state-run sugar company. To compensate, the government has embarked on a program to diversify the agricultural sector and to stimulate other sectors of the economy. Activities such as tourism, export-oriented manufacturing, and offshore banking have assumed larger roles in the economy. Tourism revenues are now the chief source of the islands foreign exchange; about 341,800 tourists visited Nevis in 2005. Additional tourist facilities, including a second cruise ship pier, hotels, and golf courses are under construction.

Gdp purchasing power parity

$726 million (2006 est.)

Gdp official exchange rate

$453 million (2005)

Gdp real growth rate

4.9% (2005 est.)

Gdp per capita ppp

$8,200 (2005 est.)

Gdp composition by sector

agriculture: 3.5%
industry: 25.8%
services: 70.7% (2001)

Labor force

18,170 (June 1995)

Unemployment rate

4.5% (1997)

Population below poverty line


Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate consumer prices

8.7% (2005 est.)


revenues: $89.7 million
expenditures: $128.2 million; including capital expenditures of $19.5 million (2003 est.)

Agriculture products

sugarcane, rice, yams, vegetables, bananas; fish


tourism, cotton, salt, copra, clothing, footwear, beverages

Industrial production growth rate


Electricity production

125 million kWh (2004)

Electricity consumption

116.3 million kWh (2004)

Electricity exports

0 kWh (2004)

Electricity imports

0 kWh (2004)

Oil production

0 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil consumption

800 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil exports

NA bbl/day

Oil imports

NA bbl/day

Oil proved reserves

0 bbl

Natural gas production

0 cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas consumption

0 cu m (2004 est.)


$70 million (2004 est.)

Exports commodities

machinery, food, electronics, beverages, tobacco

Exports partners

US 64.7%, Canada 9.8%, Netherlands 6.9% (2006)


$405 million (2004 est.)

Imports commodities

machinery, manufactures, food, fuels

Imports partners

US 49.7%, Trinidad and Tobago 13.3%, UK 4.5% (2006)

Debt external

$314 million (2004)

Economic aid recipient


Currency code

East Caribbean dollar (XCD)

Exchange rates

East Caribbean dollars per US dollar - 2.7 (2006), 2.7 (2005), 2.7 (2004), 2.7 (2003), 2.7 (2002)

Communications - Saint Kitts and Nevis:

Fiscal year

calendar year

Telephones main lines in use

25,000 (2004)

Telephones mobile cellular

10,000 (2004)

Telephone system

general assessment: good inter-island and international connections
domestic: inter-island links via Eastern Caribbean Fiber Optic cable; construction of enhanced wireless infrastructure launched in November 2004
international: country code - 1-869; international calls are carried by submarine cable or Intelsat

Radio broadcast stations

AM 3, FM 3, shortwave 0 (2003)

Television broadcast stations

1 (plus 3 repeaters) (2003)

Internet country code


Internet hosts

50 (2006)

Internet users

10,000 (2002)

Transportation - Saint Kitts and Nevis:


2 (2006)

Airports with paved runways

total: 2
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2006)


total: 50 km
narrow gauge: 50 km 0.762-m gauge on Saint Kitts for tourists (2006)


total: 320 km
paved: 138 km
unpaved: 182 km (1999 est)

Merchant marine

total: 50 ships (1000 GRT or over) 261,556 GRT/381,593 DWT
by type: bulk carrier 1, cargo 36, chemical tanker 5, passenger/cargo 2, petroleum tanker 5, refrigerated cargo 1
foreign-owned: 41 (Greece 1, Monaco 1, Russia 5, Spain 2, Syria 3, Tanzania 1, Turkey 6, UAE 19, Ukraine 3) (2006)

Ports and terminals

Basseterre, Charlestown

Military - Saint Kitts and Nevis:

Military branches

Saint Kitts and Nevis Defense Force (includes Coast Guard), Royal Saint Kitts and Nevis Police Force

Military service age and obligation

18 years of age (est.) (2004)

Manpower available for military service

males age 18-49: 9,196
females age 18-49: 9,236 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service

males age 18-49: 7,119
females age 18-49: 7,645 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually

males age 18-49: 357
females age 18-49: 347 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures percent of gdp


Disputes international

joins other Caribbean states to counter Venezuelas claim that Aves Island sustains human habitation, a criterion under UNCLOS, which permits Venezuela to extend its EEZ/continental shelf over a large portion of the eastern Caribbean Sea

This page was last updated on 16 September, 2007
Source: CIA >>>

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