General Information about Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

The official name is Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. A state in the West Indies in the Lesser Antilles group. Located on the island of St. Vincent and the Grenadines (32 islands). The total area is 389 km2, the population is 116.4 thousand people. (2002 estimate). The official language is English. The capital is Kingstown (17 thousand people, est. 2002). Public holiday – Independence Day October 27 (since 1979). The monetary unit is the East Caribbean dollar. Member of the UN (since 1980) and its specialized organizations, the OAS, the Commonwealth of Nations, CARI-COM, etc.

Geography of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

They are located between 12°32′ and 13°23′ north latitude and 6Г05′ and 6Г33′ west longitude. They are washed by the Caribbean Sea in the west and the Atlantic Ocean in the east. The length of the coastline is 84 km. The relief is mountainous, of volcanic origin, the highest point is the active Soufrière volcano (1234 m), the last eruption in 1979 caused the evacuation of the population from almost 2/3 of the country’s territory. The climate is tropical trade winds, the average annual temperature is +26°C. The average annual rainfall is approx. 2500 mm. Tropical hurricanes are possible from June to November. Significant hydro resources. Nearly 1/3 of electricity is generated at hydroelectric power stations. Forests cover 47% of the territory. The largest land animal is the agouti from the order of rodents, a large species diversity of birds.

Population of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

There is a permanent population on 8 of the 33 islands of the state. According to Countryaah, more than 90% of the population lives on the island of St. Vincent. The population increases slightly: in 1997-2002 – from 112.4 thousand to 116.4 thousand people. (estimated). The annual increase is 0.37%, the birth rate is 17.5%, the death rate is 6.12%, the infant mortality rate is 16.2 people. per 1000 newborns (2002 estimate). The average life expectancy is 72.8 years. Age structure: 0-14 years old – 28.9%, 15-59 years old – 64.8%, 60 years and older – 6.3%. There are 103 men for every 100 women. Share of urban population 55%, emigration 1.2% (est. 2002). Adult literacy is 96%. Vincentians are predominantly mulattoes and descendants of African slaves, 8% are Indians and Sambos. The official language is English, but part of the population uses Patois, a local dialect of French, in everyday life. Protestants predominate (Anglicans 47%, Methodists 28%), Catholics 13%. History St. Vincent Island was discovered by the expedition of H. Columbus in 1498 on St. Vincent’s Day. In the 15th-17th centuries. Carib Indians lived on the islands, who put up serious resistance to European colonists who tried to settle on the island. Until the 17th century – possession of Spain. During the 17th and 18th centuries alternately passed under the control of France and Great Britain. Under the Treaty of Versailles in 1783, it finally became a colony of Great Britain. Until the abolition of slavery in 1838, Negro slaves were used as labor on the plantations of St. Vincent. In 1846 a group of Portuguese and later Indians were brought in to work on the plantations. Until 1956, St. Vincent was part of the Windward Islands, in 1958-62 – in the West Indies Federation. In 1969 Saint Vincent and the Grenadines was declared a state associated with Great Britain. In 1974, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines became part of the Caribbean Community, and independence was proclaimed in 1979. In 2000, an attempt to raise the salaries of members of parliament led to massive popular demonstrations and early elections held in March 2001.

Science and culture of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

Universal compulsory and free education for children aged 5 to 15. There are 65 primary schools (19.17 thousand students, 767 teachers in 1999), 21 secondary schools, and a technical college. Bishop’s private college has been operating since 1963. In cooperation with the Memorial University of Newfoundland (Canada), the College of Education operates in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. Several periodicals are published, incl. The Vincentian (since 1919) and the Government Gazette (since 1868). There are 4 local radio stations, there is 1 local TV station, cable and satellite TV broadcasting of the main US and UK channels. In 2000, there were (per 1,000 people) 685 radios, 234 televisions, and 105.8 personal computers in the country. Kingstown Botanic Gardens, founded in 1765, considered the oldest in the Western Hemisphere. The National Museum is located in Kingstown.

People of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines