Introduction ::Dominica

    Dominica 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, Dominica's 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.

Geography ::Dominica

People and Society ::Dominica

Government ::Dominica

    conventional long form: Commonwealth of Dominica
    conventional short form: Dominica
    parliamentary democracy
    name: Roseau
    geographic coordinates: 15 18 N, 61 24 W
    time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
    10 parishes; Saint Andrew, Saint David, Saint George, Saint John, Saint Joseph, Saint Luke, Saint Mark, Saint Patrick, Saint Paul, Saint Peter
    3 November 1978 (from the UK)
    Independence Day, 3 November (1978)
    3 November 1978
    common law based on the English model
    accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
    18 years of age; universal
    chief of state: President Eliud WILLIAMS (since 17 September 2012)
    head of government: Prime Minister Roosevelt SKERRIT (since 8 January 2004)
    cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister
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    elections: president elected by the House of Assembly for a five-year term; election last held on 1 October 2003 (next to be held in October 2013); prime minister appointed by the president
    election results: Eliud WILLIAMS was elected president following the resignation of Nicholas LIVERPOOL
    unicameral House of Assembly (32 seats; 9 members appointed, 21 elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms, 1 speaker elected from among persons who are not members of the House, responsible for the management and general administration of the House, and one ex-officio Clerk of the House)
    elections: last held on 18 December 2009 (next to be held in 2015); 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 61.2%, UWP 34.9%, other 3.9%; seats by party - DLP 18, UWP 3
    highest court(s): The Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC) is the itinerant superior court of record for the 9-member Organization of Eastern Caribbean States to include Dominica; the ECSC - based on St. Lucia - is headed by the chief justice and is comprised of the Court of Appeal with 3 justices and the High Court with 16 judges; sittings of the Court of Appeal and High Court rotate among the 9 member states; 2 High Court judges reside in Dominica
    note - Dominica is a member of the Caribbean Court of Justice
    judge selection and term of office: ECSC chief justice appointed by Her Majesty, Queen ELIZABETH II; other justices and judges appointed by the Judicial and Legal Services Commission; Court of Appeal justices appointed for life with mandatory retirement at age 65; High Court judges appointed for life with mandatory retirement at age 62
    subordinate courts: Court of Summary Jurisdiction; magistrates' courts
    Dominica Freedom Party or DFP [Judith PESTAINA]
    Dominica Labor Party or DLP [Roosevelt SKERRIT]
    Dominica United Workers Party or UWP [Hector JOHN]
    Dominica Liberation Movement or DLM (a small leftist party)
    ACP, AOSIS, C, Caricom, CD, CDB, CELAC, Commonwealth of Nations, ECCU, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO (subscriber), ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, NAM, OAS, OECS, OIF, OPANAL, OPCW, Petrocaribe, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
    chief of mission: Ambassador Hubert J. CHARLES
    chancery: 3216 New Mexico Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20016
    telephone: [1] (202) 364-6781
    FAX: [1] (202) 364-6791
    consulate(s) general: New York
    the US does not have an embassy in Dominica; the US Ambassador to Barbados is accredited to Dominica
    green, 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, unique to Dominica, encircled by 10 green, five-pointed stars edged in yellow; the 10 stars represent the 10 administrative divisions (parishes); green symbolizes the island's lush vegetation; the triple-colored cross represents the Christian Trinity; the yellow color denotes sunshine, the main agricultural products (citrus and bananas), and the native Carib Indians; black is for the rich soil and the African heritage of most citizens; white signifies rivers, waterfalls, and the purity of aspirations; the red disc stands for social justice
    Sisserou parrot
    name: "Isle of Beauty"

    lyrics/music: Wilfred Oscar Morgan POND/Lemuel McPherson CHRISTIAN
    note: adopted 1967

Economy ::Dominica

    The Dominican economy has been dependent on agriculture - primarily bananas - in years past, but increasingly has been driven by tourism as the government seeks to promote Dominica as an "ecotourism" destination. Moreover, Dominica has successfully developed an offshore medical education sector. In order to diversify the island's economy, the government is also attempting to develop an offshore financial sector and plans to sign agreements with the private sector to develop geothermal energy resources. In 2003, the government began a comprehensive restructuring of the economy - including elimination of price controls, privatization of the state banana company, and tax increases - to address an economic and financial crisis and to meet IMF requirements. Hurricane Dean struck the island in August 2007 causing damages equivalent to 20% of GDP. In 2009, the economy contracted as a result of the global recession and growth remains anemic. Economic growth in 2010-11 was about 1%. Although debt levels in 2012 continued to exceed pre-recession levels, the debt burden notably declined from 80% to approximately 70% of GDP.
    $1.018 billion (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 204
    $1.014 billion (2011 est.)
    $995.4 million (2010 est.)
    note: data are in 2012 US dollars
    $497 million (2012 est.)
    0.4% (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 173
    1.9% (2011 est.)
    0.7% (2010 est.)
    $14,400 (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 94
    $14,300 (2011 est.)
    $14,100 (2010 est.)
    note: data are in 2012 US dollars
    9.2% of GDP (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 128
    8.5% of GDP (2011 est.)
    7.8% of GDP (2010 est.)
    household consumption: 77.7%
    government consumption: 18%
    investment in fixed capital: 25.2%
    investment in inventories: 0%
    exports of goods and services: 38.1%
    imports of goods and services: -59%
    (2012 est.)
    agriculture: 13.6%
    industry: 15%
    services: 71.4% (2012 est.)
    bananas, citrus, mangos, root crops, coconuts, cocoa
    note: forest and fishery potential not exploited
    soap, coconut oil, tourism, copra, furniture, cement blocks, shoes
    25,000 (2000 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 207
    agriculture: 40%
    industry: 32%
    services: 28% (2002 est.)
    23% (2000 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 170
    29% (2009 est.)
    lowest 10%: NA%
    highest 10%: NA%
    revenues: $148.1 million
    expenditures: $185.2 million (2012 est.)
    29.8% of GDP (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 92
    -7.5% of GDP (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 188
    70% of GDP (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 39
    78% of GDP (2009 est.)
    1 July - 30 June
    2.3% (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 55
    2.4% (2011 est.)
    6.5% (31 December 2010 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 47
    6.5% (31 December 2009 est.)
    9% (31 December 2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 104
    8.88% (31 December 2011 est.)
    $70.15 million (31 December 2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 184
    $70.29 million (31 December 2011 est.)
    $413.7 million (31 December 2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 181
    $383 million (31 December 2011 est.)
    $296.3 million (31 December 2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 182
    $280.4 million (31 December 2011 est.)
    -$117.4 million (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 69
    -$84.71 million (2011 est.)
    $41 million (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 198
    $33.04 million (2011 est.)
    bananas, soap, bay oil, vegetables, grapefruit, oranges
    Japan 38.2%, Antigua and Barbuda 8.4%, Jamaica 7.4%, Guyana 7.1%, Paraguay 6.1%, Trinidad and Tobago 4.6% (2012)
    $218.6 million (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 204
    $192.6 million (2011 est.)
    manufactured goods, machinery and equipment, food, chemicals
    Japan 37.5%, US 14.9%, Trinidad and Tobago 14.2%, China 4.9%, Colombia 4% (2012)
    $85 million (31 December 2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 165
    $81.12 million (31 December 2011 est.)
    $276.5 million (31 December 2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 183
    $283.9 million (31 December 2011 est.)
    East Caribbean dollars (XCD) per US dollar -
    2.7 (2012 est.)
    2.7 (2011 est.)
    2.7 (2010 est.)
    2.7 (2009)

Energy ::Dominica

Communications ::Dominica

    15,500 (2010)
    country comparison to the world: 195
    111,000 (2011)
    country comparison to the world: 190
    general assessment: fully automatic network
    domestic: fixed-line connections continued to decline slowly with the two active operators providing about 20 fixed-line connections per 100 persons; subscribership among the three mobile-cellular providers continued to increase with teledensity reaching 150 per 100 persons
    international: country code - 1-767; landing points for the East Caribbean Fiber Optic System (ECFS) and the Global Caribbean Network (GCN) submarine cables providing connectivity to other islands in the eastern Caribbean extending from the British Virgin Islands to Trinidad; microwave radio relay and SHF radiotelephone links to Martinique and Guadeloupe; VHF and UHF radiotelephone links to Saint Lucia (2010)
    no terrestrial TV service available; subscription cable TV provider offers some locally produced programming plus channels from the US, Latin America, and the Caribbean; state-operated radio broadcasts on 6 stations; privately owned radio broadcasts on about 15 stations (2007)
    723 (2012)
    country comparison to the world: 175
    28,000 (2009)
    country comparison to the world: 183

Transportation ::Dominica

    2 (2013)
    country comparison to the world: 199
    total: 2
    1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
    914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2013)
    total: 1,512 km
    country comparison to the world: 177
    paved: 762 km
    unpaved: 750 km (2010)
    total: 43
    country comparison to the world: 73
    by type: bulk carrier 11, cargo 22, chemical tanker 2, petroleum tanker 4, refrigerated cargo 3, roll on/roll off 1
    foreign-owned: 32 (Australia 1, Estonia 6, Germany 5, Greece 4, India 2, Latvia 2, Norway 1, Russia 3, Saudi Arabia 2, Syria 4, Turkey 1, Ukraine 1)
    registered in other countries: 1 (Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 1) (2010)
    major seaport(s): Portsmouth, Roseau

Military ::Dominica

Transnational Issues ::Dominica

    Dominica is the only Caribbean state to challenge Venezuela's 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
    transshipment point for narcotics bound for the US and Europe; minor cannabis producer (2008)