Dominica

Region: Caribbean

Capital: Roseau

Population:67,700 (UNDP 2011)

Surface area: 754 sq km

Currency: East Caribbean dollar (XCD)

GDP per capita: Purchasing power parity US$13,600 (2011 -CIA est.)

Background:
Dominica was the last of the Caribbean islands to be colonized by Europeans due chiefly to the fierce resistance of the native Caribs. France ceded possession to Great Britain in 1763, which made the island a colony in 1805. In 1980, two years after independence, Dominica’s fortunes improved when a corrupt and tyrannical administration was replaced by that of Mary Eugenia Charles, the first female prime minister in the Caribbean, who remained in office for 15 years. Some 3,000 Carib Indians still living on Dominica are the only pre-Columbian population remaining in the eastern Caribbean.

Economy – Overview
The Dominican economy has been dependent on agriculture – primarily bananas – in years past, but increasingly has been driven by tourism as the government seeks to promote Dominica as an “ecotourism” destination. In order to diversify the island’s production base, the government also is attempting to develop an offshore financial sector and has signed an agreement with the EU to develop geothermal energy resources. In 2003, the government began a comprehensive restructuring of the economy – including elimination of price controls, privatization of the state banana company, and tax increases – to address an economic and financial crisis and to meet IMF requirements. This restructuring paved the way for an economic recovery and helped to reduce the debt burden, which remains at about 80% of GDP. Hurricane Dean struck the island in August 2007 causing damages equivalent to 20% of GDP. In 2009, growth slowed as a result of the global recession; it picked up only slightly in 2010-11. (CIA, 2012)

Major Export Commodities: bananas, soap, bay oil, vegetables, grapefruit, oranges

Remittances:US $26 million (World Bank 2011 est.)

Human Development Index 2011: 81 out of 187 countries (UNDP 2011)

Official Development Assistance and Major Development Partners: Net ODA in 2006 was US $1.84 million. Major development partners include Caribbean Development Bank, the IMF, and the European Community.

Total External Debt: US $303 million (2008) CIA.

Life Expectancy At Birth: 77.5 years (UNDP 2011)

Environmental Indicators:     

                                         Endangered Species (as a % of all species): 9

                                         Forested Area (percentage of land area): 60.3

                                         CO2 Emissions (tonnes per capita): 1.9

                                         (Data Source: UNDP 2011)

United Nations membership date: 18 December 1978

New York Mission:
Permanent Mission of the Commonwealth of Dominica
to the United Nations
800 Second Avenue, Suite 400H
New York, N.Y. 10017 USA
Telephone: 212-949-0853
Fax: 212-808-4975, 661-0979

Websitewww.un.int/wcm/content/site/dominica/

 

Sources:

CIA World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. www.cia.gov

World Development Indicators. World Bank www.worldbank.org

Development, Recipient Aid Charts. Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. www.oecd.org

Human Development Report 2011. United Nations Development Programme. www.undp.org

 

Updated July 2012