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									                       Facts about Jamaica




Official Name      Jamaica
Administrative     14 parishes; Clarendon, Hanover, Kingston, Manchester,
Divisions          Portland, Saint Andrew, Saint Ann, Saint Catherine, Saint
                   Elizabeth, Saint James, Saint Mary, Saint Thomas,
                   Trelawny, Westmoreland
Age Structure      0-14 years: 28.6% (male 395,074; female 376,870)
                   15-64 years: 64.5% (male 870,486; female 869,431)
                   65 years and over: 6.8% (male 82,022; female 101,984)
                   (2003 est.)
Airports           Norman Manley International Airport, Donald Sangster
                   International Airport, Tinson Pen Airport
Area               total: 10,991 sq km
                   land: 10,831 sq km
                   water: 160 sq km
Average Rainfall   78 inches annually
Average            82° F
Temperature
Birth Rate         17.35 births/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Capital            Kingston
Climate            tropical; hot, humid; temperate interior
Climate            Tropical. Hot, Humid, temperate interior.
Coastline          1,022 km
Coat of Arms       The Jamaican national motto is ‘Out
                   of Many One People’, based on the
                   population’s multi-racial roots. The
                   motto is represented on the Coat of
                   Arms, showing a male and female
                   member of the Taino tribe standing
                   on either side of a shield which bears
                   a red cross with five golden
                   pineapples. The crest shows a
                   Jamaican crocodile mounted on the
                   Royal Helmet of the British
                   Monarchy and mantling.
Constitution       6 August 1962
Coordinates        18 15 N, 77 30 W
Currency            Jamaican Dollar. Bank notes are issued for the following
                    amounts $50, $100, $500, $1000. The heads of famous
                      Jamaican people appear on the notes. One Jamaican
                      dollar is equal to about 40 US dollars. The exchange
                      rates change everyday. There are 1 cent, 5 cents, 10
                      cents, 25 cents, 50 cents 1 dollar, 10 dollar and 20-
                      dollar coins. The heads of famous Jamaican people
                      also appear on the back of the coins.
Death Rate           5.42 deaths/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Economy              The economy, which depends heavily on tourism and
                     bauxite, has been stagnant since 1995. After five years of
                     recession, the economy inched ahead, by 0.8% in 2000,
                     1.7% in 2001, and 0.8% in 2002; the global economic
                     slowdown, particularly in the United States after the 11
                     September 2001 terrorist attacks, has stunted the
                     economic recovery. Serious problems include: high
                     interest rates; increased foreign competition; a pressured,
                     sometimes sliding, exchange rate; a widening
                     merchandise trade deficit; and a growing internal debt,
                     the result of government bailouts to various ailing sectors
                     of the economy, particularly the financial sector.
                     Depressed economic conditions have led to increased
                     civil unrest, including serious violent crime. Jamaica's
                     medium-term prospects will depend upon encouraging
                     investment and tourism, maintaining a competitive
                     exchange rate, selling off reacquired firms, and
                     implementing proper fiscal and monetary policies.
Elevation Extremes   lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
                     highest point: Blue Mountain Peak 2,256 m
Environmental        party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-
International        Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species,
Agreements           Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life
                     Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection,
                     Ship Pollution, Wetlands
                     signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Environmental        heavy rates of deforestation; coastal waters polluted by
Issues               industrial waste, sewage, and oil spills; damage to coral
                     reefs; air pollution in Kingston results from vehicle
                     emissions
Ethnic Groups        black 90.9%, East Indian 1.3%, white 0.2%, Chinese
                     0.2%, mixed 7.3%, other 0.1%
Executive Branch     chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February
                     1952), represented by Governor General Sir Howard
                     Felix COOKE (since 1 August 1991)
                     head of government: Prime Minister Percival James
                     PATTERSON (since 30 March 1992)
                     cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the governor general on
                     the advice of the prime minister
                       elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; governor
                       general appointed by the monarch on the
                       recommendation of the prime minister; following
                       legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the
                       leader of the majority coalition in the House of
                       Representatives is appointed prime minister by the
                       governor general; the deputy prime minister is
                       recommended by the prime minister
Export Trading         US 28.1%, Canada 12.2%, Norway 10.7%, UK 10.5%,
Partners               Germany 7%, Netherlands 5.6% (2002)
Exports                alumina, bauxite; sugar, bananas, rum, apparel, coffee,
                       citrus and citrus products, cocoa
External Debt          $5.3 billion (2002 est.)
GDP                    purchasing power parity - $10.08 billion (2002 est.)
GDP by Sector          agriculture: 6%
                       industry: 31%
                       services: 63% (2002 est.)
GDP per capita         purchasing power parity - $3,800 (2002 est.)
Geography
Government Type       constitutional parliamentary democracy
Head of Government The head of government in Jamaica is the Prime Minister
                      who is elected by the Jamaican people. The prime
                      minister is the leader of the majority party in the House of
                      Representatives.
Head of State         The head of state is the governor-general, who is
                      appointed by the monarch of England.
History
HIV/AIDS (Adult       1.2% (2001 est.)
Prevalence)
HIV/AIDS (People      20,000 (2001 est.)
Living with)
HIV/AIDS Deaths       980 (2001 est.)
Import Trading        US 45%, Trinidad and Tobago 11%, Japan 4.7% (2002)
Partners
Imports               machinery and transport equipment, construction
                      materials, fuel, food, chemicals, fertilizers, consumer
                      goods, electrical equipment
Independence          6 August 1962 (from UK)
Industries            tourism, bauxite, textiles, food processing, light
                      manufactures, rum, cement, metal, paper, chemical
                      products
Infant Mortality Rate total: 13.26 deaths/1,000 live births
                      female: 12.17 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
                      male: 14.3 deaths/1,000 live births
International         ACP, C, Caricom, CDB, ECLAC, FAO, G-15, G-19, G-77,
Organization          IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM,
Participation        IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC,
                     IOM (observer), ISO, ITU, LAES, NAM, OAS, OPANAL,
                     OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO,
                     WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
Irrigated Land       250 sq km (1998 est.)
Labour Force by      services 60%, agriculture 21%, industry 19% (1998)
Occupation
Land Use             arable land: 16.07%
                     permanent crops: 9.23%
                     other: 74.7% (1998 est.)
Language             The official language is English but Patois, a dialect, is
                     widely spoken across the island
Legal System         based on English common law; has not accepted
                     compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Legislative Branch   bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (a 21-
                     member body appointed by the governor general on the
                     recommendations of the prime minister and the leader of
                     the opposition; ruling party is allocated 13 seats, and the
                     opposition is allocated eight seats) and the House of
                     Representatives (60 seats; members are elected by
                     popular vote to serve five-year terms)
                     elections: last held 16 October 2002 (next to be held NA
                     October 2007)
                     election results: percent of vote by party - PNP 52%, JLP
                     47.3%; seats by party - PNP 34, JLP 26
Length               146 miles
Life Expectancy at   total population: 75.85 years
Birth                male: 73.84 years
                     female: 77.97 years (2003 est.)
Literacy             definition: age 15 and over has ever attended school
                     total population: 87.9%
                     male: 84.1%
                     female: 91.6% (2003 est.)
Location             Caribbean, island in the Caribbean Sea, south of Cuba
Maritime Claims      measured from claimed archipelagic baselines
                     exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
                     territorial sea: 12 NM
                     continental shelf: 200 NM or to edge of the continental
                     margin
                     contiguous zone: 24 NM
Median Age           total: 26.5 years
                     male: 25.8 years
                     female: 27.2 years (2002)
Military             Jamaica Defense Force (including Ground Forces, Coast
                     Guard, and Air Wing)
National Anthem      “Jamaica Land We Love”
National Bird        The Doctor-Bird (Trochilus
                     polytmus) or Swallow-Tail
                     Hummingbird



National Dish        Ackee and Saltfish



National Flag        The diagonal cross is gold. The top
                     and bottom triangles are green. The
                     hoist and fly (side) triangles are
                     black. “The sun shineth, the land is
                     green and the people are strong and
                     creative” is the symbolism of the
                     colours of the flag. Black depicts the
                     strength and creativity of the people;
                     Gold, the natural wealth and beauty
                     of sunlight; and green, hope and
                     agricultural resources.
National Flower      Lignum Vitae (Guiacum officinale),
                     translated from Latin, means “wood
                     of life”.

National Fruit       Ackee



National Pledge      “Before God and all mankind …”
National Song        “I Pledge My Heart”
National Tree        The Blue Mahoe (Hibiscus elatus)




Nationality          Jamaican
Natural Hazards      hurricanes (July to November), earthquakes
Natural Resources    bauxite, gypsum, limestone
Net Migration Rate   -5.78 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Police               Jamaica Constabulary Force
Political Parties    People’s National Party (PNP), Jamaica Labour Party
                     (JLP)
Population           2,695,867 (July 2003 est.): Kingston, 800,000; Montego
                     Bay, 82,000; Mandeville, 13,681; Port Antonio, 10,426;
                     Ocho Rios, 5,851; Negril, 1,166
Population Growth    0.61% (2003 est.)
Rate
Ports                  Alligator Pond, Discovery Bay, Kingston, Montego Bay,
                       Ocho Rios, Port Antonio, Rocky Point, Port Esquivel
                       (Longswharf)
Public Holidays        New Years Day (January 1), Ash Wednesday (February
                       25), Good Friday (April 9), Easter Monday (April 12),
                       Labour Day (May 23), Emancipation Day (August 1),
                       Independence Day (August 6), National Heroes Day
                       (October 18), Christmas Day (December 25), Boxing Day
                       (December 26)
Railway                Belonging to the Jamaica Railway Corporation, is no
                       longer operational, except for privately owned and used
                       rail to transport bauxite (2002)
Religions              Protestant 61.3% (Church of God 21.2%, Baptist 8.8%,
                       Anglican 5.5%, Seventh-Day Adventist 9%, Pentecostal
                       7.6%, Methodist 2.7%, United Church 2.7%, Brethren
                       1.1%, Jehovah's Witness 1.6%, Moravian 1.1%), Roman
                       Catholic 4%, other, including some spiritual cults 34.7%
Sex Ratio              at birth: 1.05 male/female
                       under 15 years: 1.05 male/female
                       15-64 years: 1 male/female
                       65 years and over: 0.8 male/female
                       total population: 1 male/female (2003 est.)
Suffrage               18 years of age
Terrain                mostly mountains, with narrow, discontinuous coastal
                       plain
Total Fertility Rate   2.01 children born/woman (2003 est.)
Well Known for               Blue Mountain Coffee
                             Solomon Gundy
                             The Jamaican Bobsled Team
                             Reggae Music and Bob Marley
                             Jerk Chicken (pork) and Sauce
                             Beautiful Beaches (eg. Dunns River Falls)

Width                  22-51 miles

								
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