Trinidad and Tobago

Country Summary

2022 population pyramid

Introduction

Background

First colonized by the Spanish, the islands came under British control in the early 19th century. The islands' sugar industry was manned by contract laborers from India between 1845 and 1917, which boosted sugar production as well as the cocoa industry. The discovery of oil on Trinidad in 1910 added another important export. Independence was attained in 1962.

Geography

Area

total: 5,128 sq km

land: 5,128 sq km

water: 0 sq km

Climate

tropical; rainy season (June to December)

Natural resources

petroleum, natural gas, asphalt

People and Society

Population

1,405,646 (2022 est.)

Ethnic groups

East Indian 35.4%, African descent 34.2%, mixed - other 15.3%, mixed - African/East Indian 7.7%, other 1.3%, unspecified 6.2% (2011 est.)

Languages

English (official), Trinidadian Creole English, Tobagonian Creole English, Caribbean Hindustani (a dialect of Hindi), Trinidadian Creole French, Spanish, Chinese

Religions

Protestant 32.1% (Pentecostal/Evangelical/Full Gospel 12%, Baptist 6.9%, Anglican 5.7%, Seventh Day Adventist 4.1%, Presbyterian/Congregational 2.5%, other Protestant 0.9%), Roman Catholic 21.6%, Hindu 18.2%, Muslim 5%, Jehovah's Witness 1.5%, other 8.4%, none 2.2%, unspecified 11.1% (2011 est.)

Population growth rate

0.14% (2022 est.)

Government

Government type

parliamentary republic

Capital

name: Port of Spain

Executive branch

chief of state: President Paula-Mae WEEKES (since 19 March 2018)

head of government: Prime Minister Keith ROWLEY (since 9 September 2015)

Legislative branch

description: bicameral Parliament consists of:
Senate (31 seats; 16 members appointed by the ruling party, 9 by the president, and 6 by the opposition party; members serve 5-year terms;)
House of Representatives (42 seats; 41 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote and the house speaker - usually designated from outside Parliament; members serve 5-year terms)

Economy

Economic overview

high-income Caribbean island economy; predominantly driven by oil and gas (80% of exports); growing Venezuelan relations threaten US support; growing tourism; key regional finance hub; rising drug-related crime; high public debt; systemic corruption

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$33.21 billion (2020 est.)

Real GDP per capita

$23,700 (2020 est.)

Agricultural products

poultry, fruit, coconuts, citrus fruit, milk, plantains, maize, oranges, eggs, gourds

Industries

petroleum and petroleum products, liquefied natural gas, methanol, ammonia, urea, steel products, beverages, food processing, cement, cotton textiles

Exports

$9.57 billion (2019 est.)

Exports - partners

United States 33%, Guyana 9%, Spain 6%, China 6% (2019)

Exports - commodities

natural gas, industrial alcohols, crude petroleum, ammonia, iron products, refined petroleum (2019)

Imports

$7.93 billion (2019 est.)

Imports - partners

United States 40%, Guyana 19%, China 6% (2019)

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, excavation machinery, shipping containers, iron, cars (2019)


Page last updated: Wednesday, Jun 01, 2022