Search this website:

This web page location:

home page  >   Caribbean  >   Saint Lucia


Saint Lucia

chief products, Fruit farming, popular vote, Commonwealth of Nations, Windward Islands

Deeper web pages:

>  Land

>  History

Saint Lucia, independent island state in the southeastern Caribbean Sea. Magnificent mountain scenery, secluded beaches, and a tropical climate draw thousands of visitors to the island each year. Fruit farming flourishes in many rural parts of the island; bananas account for much of the nation’s export earnings.

Saint Lucia is one of the Windward Islands of the West Indies. It lies between Martinique on the north and Saint Vincent on the south. It has an area of 616 sq km (238 sq mi).


Most of the population of Saint Lucia is black, and about 90 percent is Roman Catholic. English is the official language, but a French patois is widely spoken. The total population of the country (2008 estimate) is 172,884. The capital and largest city is Castries (population, 2003 estimate, 14,000); it is also the principal port and has an excellent harbor.


Saint Lucia’s economy is based largely on tourism and agriculture. Tourism has been steadily expanding in Saint Lucia since the late 1960s. The island has a good network of roads linking all towns and villages. Two airports also serve the island.

Bananas are the most important crop and principal export; other products include coconuts and mangoes. About 40,700 metric tons of fruit were harvested in 2006. Manufacturing on the island is limited; the chief products include cardboard boxes, electric parts, clothing, plastics, and beverages.

The gross domestic product, which measures the total value of goods and services produced in the country, was $899.2 million in 2006. The national currency is the East Caribbean dollar (2.70 E.C. dollars equal U.S.$1; 2006).


Saint Lucia is a parliamentary democracy. It recognizes the British king or queen as its own monarch and head of state. The monarch is represented by a governor-general. However, a cabinet headed by the prime minister wields actual executive power. The nation’s parliament holds legislative power. The 17 members of its lower house, the House of Assembly, are elected by popular vote; the 11 members of the Senate are appointed by the governor-general on the advice of the prime minister, the leader of the opposition party in parliament, and others. Saint Lucia is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations.


Microsoft ® Encarta ® 2009. © 1993-2008 Microsoft Corporation.

Article key phrases:

chief products, Fruit farming, popular vote, Commonwealth of Nations, Windward Islands, Castries, parliamentary democracy, British king, legislative power, electric parts, secluded beaches, cardboard boxes, tropical climate, East Caribbean dollar, gross domestic product, national currency, coconuts, House of Assembly, lower house, West Indies, opposition party, official language, governor-general, monarch, total population, head of state, largest city, Roman Catholic, Martinique, Saint Lucia, plastics, Saint Vincent, prime minister, People, capital, queen, agriculture, island, economy, leader, clothing, advice, services, Senate, English, nation, Government, country, dollars, tourism, area, villages, estimate, airports, percent, towns, visitors, members

Search this website: