Facts about Barbados
|Population||281,968 (July 2008 est.)|
|Time zone||UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)|
Caribbean, island in the North Atlantic Ocean, northeast of Venezuela
General info about Barbados
The island was uninhabited when first settled by the British in 1627. Slaves worked the sugar plantations established on the island until 1834 when slavery was abolished. The economy remained heavily dependent on sugar, rum, and molasses production through most of the 20th century. The gradual introduction of social and political reforms in the 1940s and 1950s led to complete independence from the UK in 1966. In the 1990s, tourism and manufacturing surpassed the sugar industry in economic importance.
What about drugs?
one of many Caribbean transshipment points for narcotics bound for Europe and the US; offshore financial center
black 90%, white 4%, Asian and mixed 6%
HIV/AIDS prevalence rate
1.5% (2003 est.)
tropical; rainy season (June to October)
petroleum, fish, natural gas
Historically, the Barbadian economy was dependent on sugarcane cultivation and related activities. However, in recent years the economy has diversified into light industry and tourism, with about three-quarters of GDP and 80% of exports being attributed to services. Growth has rebounded since 2003, bolstered by increases in construction projects and tourism revenues, reflecting its success in the higher-end segment, but the sector will likely face declining revenues with the global economic downturn. The country enjoys one of the highest per capita incomes in the region. Offshore finance and information services are important foreign exchange earners and thrive from having the same time zone as eastern US financial centers and a relatively highly educated workforce. The government continues its efforts to reduce unemployment, to encourage direct foreign investment, and to privatize remaining state-owned enterprises. The public debt-to-GDP ratio of about 80% will likely widen as the THOMPSON administration engages in a more expansionary fiscal policy.
pollution of coastal waters from waste disposal by ships; soil erosion; illegal solid waste disposal threatens contamination of aquifers
Cities in Barbadosbathsheba blackmans bridgetown crab hill greenland hillaby holetown oistins speightstown