page last updated on October 28, 2009
Flag of Dominica
Location of Dominica
 
Map of Dominica
Introduction ::Dominica
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.
Geography ::Dominica
Caribbean, island between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, about half way between Puerto Rico and Trinidad and Tobago
15 25 N, 61 20 W
total: 751 sq km
country comparison to the world: 188
land: 751 sq km
water: 0 sq km
slightly more than four times the size of Washington, DC
0 km
148 km
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
tropical; moderated by northeast trade winds; heavy rainfall
rugged mountains of volcanic origin
lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
highest point: Morne Diablatins 1,447 m
timber, hydropower, arable land
arable land: 6.67%
permanent crops: 21.33%
other: 72% (2005)
NA
NA
total: 0.02 cu km/yr
per capita: 213 cu m/yr (1996)
flash floods are a constant threat; destructive hurricanes can be expected during the late summer months
NA
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
known as "The Nature Island of the Caribbean" due to its spectacular, lush, and varied flora and fauna, which are protected by an extensive natural park system; the most mountainous of the Lesser Antilles, its volcanic peaks are cones of lava craters and include Boiling Lake, the second-largest, thermally active lake in the world
People ::Dominica
72,660 (July 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 201
0-14 years: 24% (male 8,910/female 8,518)
15-64 years: 65.8% (male 24,532/female 23,301)
65 years and over: 10.2% (male 3,187/female 4,212) (2009 est.)
total: 29.8 years
male: 29.4 years
female: 30.2 years (2009 est.)
0.208% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 184
15.73 births/1,000 population (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 135
8.2 deaths/1,000 population (July 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 104
-5.45 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 164
urban population: 74% of total population (2008)
rate of urbanization: 0.2% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.76 male(s)/female
total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2009 est.)
total: 13.65 deaths/1,000 live births
country comparison to the world: 133
male: 18.34 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 8.73 deaths/1,000 live births (2009 est.)
total population: 75.55 years
country comparison to the world: 76
male: 72.61 years
female: 78.64 years (2009 est.)
2.09 children born/woman (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 123
NA
NA
NA
noun: Dominican(s)
adjective: Dominican
black 86.8%, mixed 8.9%, Carib Amerindian 2.9%, white 0.8%, other 0.7% (2001 census)
Roman Catholic 61.4%, Seventh Day Adventist 6%, Pentecostal 5.6%, Baptist 4.1%, Methodist 3.7%, Church of God 1.2%, Jehovah's Witnesses 1.2%, other Christian 7.7%, Rastafarian 1.3%, other or unspecified 1.6%, none 6.1% (2001 census)
English (official), French patois
definition: age 15 and over has ever attended school
total population: 94%
male: 94%
female: 94% (2003 est.)
total: 13 years
male: 13 years
female: 14 years (2005)
5% of GDP (1999)
country comparison to the world: 70
Government ::Dominica
conventional long form: Commonwealth of Dominica
conventional short form: Dominica
parliamentary democracy
name: Roseau
geographic coordinates: 15 18 N, 61 24 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
10 parishes; Saint Andrew, Saint David, Saint George, Saint John, Saint Joseph, Saint Luke, Saint Mark, Saint Patrick, Saint Paul, Saint Peter
3 November 1978 (from the UK)
Independence Day, 3 November (1978)
3 November 1978
based on English common law; accepts ICJ jurisdiction
18 years of age; universal
chief of state: President Nicholas J. O. LIVERPOOL (since October 2003)
head of government: Prime Minister Roosevelt SKERRIT (since 8 January 2004)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister
elections: president elected by the House of Assembly for a five-year term; election last held 1 October 2003 (next to be held in 2013); prime minister appointed by the president
election results: Nicholas LIVERPOOL consented to a second term in 2008 at the request of the prime minister and leader of the opposition
unicameral House of Assembly (30 seats; 9 members appointed, 21 elected by popular vote; to serve five-year terms)
elections: last held 5 May 2005 (next to be held by 5 August 2010); note - tradition dictates that the election will be held within five years of the last election, but technically it is five years from the first seating of parliament (12 May 2005) plus a 90-day grace period
election results: percent of vote by party - DLP 52.1%, UWP 43.6%, DFP 3.2%, other 1.1%; seats by party - DLP 12, UWP 8, independent 1
Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court, consisting of the Court of Appeal and the High Court (located in Saint Lucia; one of the six judges must reside in Dominica and preside over the Court of Summary Jurisdiction)
Dominica Freedom Party or DFP [Charles SAVARIN]; Dominica Labor Party or DLP [Roosevelt SKERRIT]; Dominica United Workers Party or UWP [Earl WILLIAMS]
Dominica Liberation Movement or DLM (a small leftist party)
ACCT, ACP, C, Caricom, CDB, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO (subscriber), ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NAM, OAS, OECS, OIF, OPANAL, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Judith Ann ROLLE
chancery: 3216 New Mexico Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20016
telephone: [1] (202) 364-6781
FAX: [1] (202) 364-6791
consulate(s) general: New York
the US does not have an embassy in Dominica; the US Ambassador to Barbados is accredited to Dominica
green, with a centered cross of three equal bands - the vertical part is yellow (hoist side), black, and white and the horizontal part is yellow (top), black, and white; superimposed in the center of the cross is a red disk bearing a sisserou parrot encircled by 10 green, five-pointed stars edged in yellow; the 10 stars represent the 10 administrative divisions (parishes)
Economy ::Dominica
The Dominican economy depends on agriculture, primarily bananas, and remains highly vulnerable to climatic conditions and international economic developments. Tourism has increased as the government seeks to promote Dominica as an "ecotourism" destination and has developed a new tourism development plan with assistance from the EU. Hurricane Dean struck the island in August 2007 causing damages equivalent to 20% of GDP. 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 Dominica's economic and financial crisis of 2001-02 and to meet IMF targets. This restructuring paved the way for the current economic recovery - real growth for 2006 reached a two-decade high - and will help to reduce the debt burden, which remains at about 100% of GDP. In order to diversify the island's production base, the government is attempting to develop an offshore financial sector and has signed an agreement with the EU to develop geothermal energy resources.
$719.6 million (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 209
$701.3 million (2007 est.)
$691 million (2006 est.)
note: data are in 2008 US dollars
$364 million (2008 est.)
2.6% (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 141
1.5% (2007 est.)
4% (2006 est.)
$9,900 (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 106
$9,700 (2007 est.)
$9,600 (2006 est.)
note: data are in 2008 US dollars
agriculture: 17.7%
industry: 32.8%
services: 49.5% (2004 est.)
25,000 (2000 est.)
country comparison to the world: 198
agriculture: 40%
industry: 32%
services: 28% (2000 est.)
23% (2000 est.)
country comparison to the world: 172
30% (2002 est.)
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
revenues: $73.9 million
expenditures: $84.4 million (2001)
2.7% (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 29
6.5% (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 68
6.5% (31 December 2007)
NA% (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 91
9.17% (31 December 2007)
$NA (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 166
$73.71 million (31 December 2007)
$NA (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 148
$269.1 million (31 December 2007)
$NA (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 162
$193.1 million (31 December 2007)
bananas, citrus, mangoes, root crops, coconuts, cocoa; forest and fishery potential not exploited
soap, coconut oil, tourism, copra, furniture, cement blocks, shoes
NA
85 million kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 193
79.05 million kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 193
0 kWh (2008 est.)
0 kWh (2008 est.)
0 bbl/day (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 182
1,000 bbl/day (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 198
0 bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 191
838.2 bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 191
0 bbl (1 January 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 180
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 189
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 190
0 cu m (2008)
country comparison to the world: 189
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 190
0 cu m (1 January 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 187
$-72 million (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 77
$94 million (2006)
country comparison to the world: 194
bananas, soap, bay oil, vegetables, grapefruit, oranges
Japan 29.8%, China 25.2%, Jamaica 6.2%, Antigua and Barbuda 6%, Guyana 5.1%, UK 4.2% (2008)
$296 million (2006)
country comparison to the world: 195
manufactured goods, machinery and equipment, food, chemicals
Japan 42.5%, US 16.7%, China 13.6%, Trinidad and Tobago 8.3% (2008)
$213 million (2004)
country comparison to the world: 179
East Caribbean dollars (XCD) per US dollar - 2.7 (2007), 2.7 (2006), 2.7 (2005), 2.7 (2004), 2.7 (2003)
Communications ::Dominica
17,500 (2008)
country comparison to the world: 197
100,000 (2008)
country comparison to the world: 183
general assessment: NA
domestic: fully automatic network
international: country code - 1-767; landing point for the East Caribbean Fiber Optic System (ECFS) submarine cable with links to 13 other islands in the eastern Caribbean extending from the British Virgin Islands to Trinidad; microwave radio relay and SHF radiotelephone links to Martinique and Guadeloupe; VHF and UHF radiotelephone links to Saint Lucia
AM 2, FM 4, shortwave 0 (2003)
1 (2004)
.dm
485 (2009)
country comparison to the world: 173
27,500 (2008)
country comparison to the world: 182
Transportation ::Dominica
2 (2009)
country comparison to the world: 198
total: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2009)
total: 780 km
country comparison to the world: 187
paved: 393 km
unpaved: 387 km (2000)
total: 53
country comparison to the world: 69
by type: bulk carrier 14, cargo 27, chemical tanker 3, petroleum tanker 5, refrigerated cargo 2, roll on/roll off 1, vehicle carrier 1
foreign-owned: 47 (Australia 2, Estonia 7, Greece 10, India 2, Latvia 1, Norway 1, Russia 3, Saudi Arabia 2, Singapore 7, Syria 2, Turkey 5, Ukraine 4, UAE 1) (2008)
Portsmouth, Roseau
Military ::Dominica
no regular military forces; Commonwealth of Dominica Police Force (includes Coast Guard) (2008)
males age 16-49: 18,584 (2008 est.)
males age 16-49: 15,821
females age 16-49: 15,291 (2009 est.)
male: 776
female: 731 (2009 est.)
NA (2006)
Transnational Issues ::Dominica
Dominica is the only Caribbean state to challenge Venezuela's sovereignty claim over Aves Island and joins the other island nations in challenging whether the feature sustains human habitation, a criterion under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), which permits Venezuela to extend its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and continental shelf claims over a large portion of the eastern Caribbean Sea
transshipment point for narcotics bound for the US and Europe; minor cannabis producer (2008)