Central America and Caribbean :: Saint Barthelemy
(overseas collectivity of France)

Introduction ::Saint Barthelemy

    Discovered in 1493 by Christopher COLUMBUS who named it for his brother Bartolomeo, Saint Barthelemy was first settled by the French in 1648. In 1784, the French sold the island to Sweden, who renamed the largest town Gustavia, after the Swedish King GUSTAV III, and made it a free port; the island prospered as a trade and supply center during the colonial wars of the 18th century. France repurchased the island in 1877 and took control the following year. It was placed under the administration of Guadeloupe. Saint Barthelemy retained its free port status along with various Swedish appellations such as Swedish street and town names, and the three-crown symbol on the coat of arms. In 2003 the populace of the island voted to secede from Guadeloupe, and in 2007 the island became a French overseas collectivity.

Geography ::Saint Barthelemy

People and Society ::Saint Barthelemy

    white, Creole (mulatto), black, Guadeloupe Mestizo (French-East Asia)
    French (primary), English
    Roman Catholic, Protestant, Jehovah's Witnesses
    7,298 (July 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 228
    0-14 years: 18.2% (male 682/female 646)
    15-24 years: 6.8% (male 262/female 235)
    25-54 years: 47% (male 1,870/female 1,560)
    55-64 years: 14.7% (male 580/female 495)
    65 years and over: 13.3% (male 484/female 484) (2013 est.)
    total: 41.7 years
    male: 41.8 years
    female: 41.6 years (2013 est.)
    at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
    0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
    15-24 years: 1.12 male(s)/female
    25-54 years: 1.2 male(s)/female
    55-64 years: 1.17 male(s)/female
    65 years and over: 1 male(s)/female
    total population: 1.14 male(s)/female (2013 est.)

Government ::Saint Barthelemy

    conventional long form: Overseas Collectivity of Saint Barthelemy
    conventional short form: Saint Barthelemy
    local long form: Collectivite d'outre mer de Saint-Barthelemy
    local short form: Saint-Barthelemy
    abbreviation: Saint-Barth (French); St. Barts or St. Barths (English)
    overseas collectivity of France
    name: Gustavia
    geographic coordinates: 17 53 N, 62 51 W
    time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
    none (overseas collectivity of France)
    Fete de la Federation, 14 July (1789); note - local holiday is St. Barthelemy Day, 24 August (1572)
    4 October 1958 (French Constitution)
    French civil law
    18 years of age, universal
    chief of state: President Francois HOLLANDE (since 15 May 2012), represented by Deputy Prefect Philippe CHOPIN (since 16 November 2011)
    head of government: President of the Territorial Council Bruno MAGRAS (since 16 July 2007)
    cabinet: Executive Council; note - there is also an advisory, economic, social, and cultural council
    (For more information visit the World Leaders website Opens in New Window)
    elections: French president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; prefect appointed by the French president on the advice of the French Ministry of Interior; president of the Territorial Council elected by the members of the Council for a five-year term
    election results: Bruno MAGRAS unanimously elected president by the Territorial Council on 16 July 2007 (next to be held in 2012)
    unicameral Territorial Council (19 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
    elections: last held on 18 March 2012 (next to be held in July 2017)
    election results: percent of vote by party - SBA 73.8%, Ensemble pour Saint-Barthelemy 15.9%, Tous Unis pour Saint-Barthelemy 10.3%; seats by party - SBA 16, Ensemble pour Saint-Barthelemy 2, Tous Unis pour Saint-Barthelemy 1
    note: Saint Barthelemy elects one seat to the French Senate; election last held on 21 September 2008 (next to be held in September 2014); results - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - UMP 1; one seat (shared with Saint Martin) was elected to the French National Assembly on 17 June 1012 (next to be held by June 2017); results - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - UMP 1
    Action-Equilibre-Transparence [Maxime DESOUCHES]
    Ensemble pour Saint-Barthelemy [Benoit CHAUVIN]
    Saint-Barth d'Abord! or SBA [Bruno MAGRAS]
    Tous Unis pour Saint-Barthelemy [Karine MIOT-RICHARD]
    The Marine Reserve (protection of fish)
    Rotary Club
    none (overseas collectivity of France)
    none (overseas collectivity of France)
    the flag of France is used
    name: "L'Hymne a St. Barthelemy" (Hymn to St. Barthelemy)
    lyrics/music: Isabelle Massart DERAVIN/Michael VALENTI
    note: local anthem in use since 1999; as a collectivity of France, "La Marseillaise" is official (see France)

Economy ::Saint Barthelemy

    The economy of Saint Barthelemy is based upon high-end tourism and duty-free luxury commerce, serving visitors primarily from North America. The luxury hotels and villas host 70,000 visitors each year with another 130,000 arriving by boat. The relative isolation and high cost of living inhibits mass tourism. The construction and public sectors also enjoy significant investment in support of tourism. With limited fresh water resources, all food must be imported, as must all energy resources and most manufactured goods. Employment is strong and attracts labor from Brazil and Portugal.
    euros (EUR) per US dollar -
    0.7838 (2012 est.)
    0.7185 (2011 est.)
    0.755 (2010 est.)
    0.7198 (2009 est.)
    0.6827 (2008 est.)

Communications ::Saint Barthelemy

    general assessment: fully integrated access
    domestic: direct dial capability with both fixed and wireless systems
    international: country code - 590; undersea fiber-optic cable provides voice and data connectivity to Puerto Rico and Guadeloupe (2008)
    no local TV broadcasters; 3 FM radio channels (2 via repeater)
    .bl; note - .gp, the Internet country code for Guadeloupe, and .fr, the Internet country code for France, might also be encountered

Transportation ::Saint Barthelemy

Military ::Saint Barthelemy