Facts about Grenada
|Population||90,343 (July 2008 est.)|
|Time zone||UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)|
Caribbean, island between the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean, north of Trinidad and Tobago
General info about Grenada
Carib Indians inhabited Grenada when COLUMBUS discovered the island in 1498, but it remained uncolonized for more than a century. The French settled Grenada in the 17th century, established sugar estates, and imported large numbers of African slaves. Britain took the island in 1762 and vigorously expanded sugar production. In the 19th century, cacao eventually surpassed sugar as the main export crop; in the 20th century, nutmeg became the leading export. In 1967, Britain gave Grenada autonomy over its internal affairs. Full independence was attained in 1974, making Grenada one of the smallest independent countries in the Western Hemisphere. Grenada was seized by a Marxist military council on 19 October 1983. Six days later the island was invaded by US forces and those of six other Caribbean nations, which quickly captured the ringleaders and their hundreds of Cuban advisers. Free elections were reinstituted the following year and have continued since that time. Hurricane Ivan struck Grenada in September of 2004 causing severe damage.
English (official), French patois
What about drugs?
small-scale cannabis cultivation; lesser transshipment point for marijuana and cocaine to US
black 82%, mixed black and European 13%, European and East Indian 5%, and trace of Arawak/Carib Amerindian
HIV/AIDS prevalence rate
tropical; tempered by northeast trade winds
timber, tropical fruit, deepwater harbors
Grenada relies on tourism as its main source of foreign exchange, especially since the construction of an international airport in 1985. Hurricanes Ivan (2004) and Emily (2005) severely damaged the nutmeg industry, which was previously a key driver of economic growth, and the industry is not expected to recover in the near-term. The agricultural sector, particularly nutmeg and cocoa cultivation, has gradually recovered from the hurricanes, and the tourism sector has seen substantial increases in foreign direct investment as the regional share of the tourism market increases. Strong performances in construction and manufacturing, together with the development of an offshore financial industry, have also contributed to growth in national output; however, economic growth will likely slow in 2009 because of the global economic slowdown's effects on tourism and remittances. Grenada has rebounded from the devastating effects of Hurricanes Ivan and Emily, but is now saddled with the debt burden from the rebuilding process. Public debt-to-GDP is nearly 110%, leaving the THOMAS administration limited room to engage in public investments and social spending.
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