THE BAHAMAS

Commonwealth of the Bahamas

COUNTRY OVERVIEW

LOCATION AND SIZE.

The Bahamas is a chain of 700 islands and about 2,000 cays (low islands or reefs of sand or coral). However, only 29 of the islands are inhabited. The Bahamas is in the North Atlantic Ocean on the eastern edge of the Caribbean, just 72 kilometers (45 miles) southeast of Florida. It has an area of 13,939 square kilometers (5,382 square miles) and is a bit smaller than Connecticut. The islands have a total coastline of 3,542 square kilometers (1,368 square miles). The largest city in the nation is Nassau, the capital, and the second largest is Freeport.

POPULATION.

The population of the Bahamas was estimated to be 294,982 in July 2000. The nation has a high birth rate with 19.54 births per 1,000 people compared with 6.81 deaths per 1,000. The fertility rate is 2.33 children born per woman. Because of the increase in AIDS, the infant mortality rate is high, with 16.99 deaths per 1,000 inhabitants. The population is young, with 30 percent under the age of 15 and only 6 percent over 65. Life expectancy is 68.25 years for men and 73.94 years for women. The rate of people moving out of the country is high at 2.67 per 1,000 people. These combined facts give the nation an overall growth rate of 1.01 percent. By 2015, the islands are expected to have a population of 330,000.

Bahamians are primarily of African descent (85 percent). People of European ancestry make up 12 percent of the population and the remaining 3 percent is of Asian or Hispanic origin. English is the official language, and

religious worship is largely Christian. The Baptist church has the biggest following (32 percent), with the Anglican, Roman Catholic, and Protestant churches well represented. The literacy rate is high, almost 100 percent.

Most Bahamians reside in urban areas, with two-thirds of the population living on New Providence Island where Nassau is located. Many others live in or near Freeport on Grand Bahama Island. There are small settlements throughout the outer islands, called the "Family Islands".

DEPENDENCIES

The Bahamas has no territories or colonies.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Eneas, William J. Godfrey. Agriculture in the Bahamas: Historical Development, 1492-1992. New York: Media Publishing, 1998.

Sealey, Neal E. The Bahamas Today: An Introduction to the Human and Economic Geography of the Bahamas. London: Macmillan Caribbean, 1993.

U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. World Factbook 2000. <http://www.odci.gov/cia/publications/factbook/index.html> . Accessed August 2001.

U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. World Factbook 2001. <http://www.odci.gov/cia/publications/factbook/index.html> . Accessed September 2001.

U.S. Department of State. Background Notes: The Bahamas. 1999. <http://www.state.gov/r/pa/bgn/index/cfm?docid=1857> . Accessed August 2001.

—. 1999 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: The Bahamas. 2000. <http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/1999/index.cfm?docid=373> . Accessed August 2001.

—. FY 2001 Country Commercial Guide: The Bahamas. <http://www.state.gov/> . Accessed August 2001.

—Tom Lansford

CAPITAL:

Nassau.

MONETARY UNIT:

Bahamian dollar (B$). One Bahamian dollar equals 100 cents. The Bahamas issues bank notes of B$0.50, 1, 3, 5, 10, 20, 50, and 100. There are coins of 1, 5, 10, 15, 25, and 50 cents.

CHIEF EXPORTS:

Pharmaceuticals, cement, rum, crawfish, refined petroleum products.

CHIEF IMPORTS:

Foodstuffs, manufactured goods, crude oil, vehicles, electronics.

GROSS DOMESTIC PRODUCT:

US$4.5 billion (purchasing power parity, 2000 est.).

BALANCE OF TRADE:

Exports: US$376.8 million (2000 est.). Imports: US$1.73 billion (2000 est.).

Also read article about The Bahamas from Wikipedia

User Contributions:

Frank
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Dec 29, 2009 @ 5:05 am
i'd really like to see the Bahamas one day
that is my dream to see the beautiful island
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Jan 9, 2011 @ 6:18 pm
i have heard so much about the bahamas,done a research on it and i can realy say that it is realy a paradise on earth.
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Jan 22, 2011 @ 8:08 am
Bahamas is my dream place together with my family hope to it will come true.
Linda
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Jun 7, 2011 @ 2:14 pm
I like your info but i reallyl think that u should add some pics
Ximena
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Oct 29, 2011 @ 6:18 pm
This is the most beautiful country I have ever visit, love it
bryoni allen
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Nov 14, 2012 @ 7:07 am
The Bahamas is the dream place that i would really like to visit and i wish that u should have given us some more information like some tourists attractions.
joey
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Nov 29, 2012 @ 12:12 pm
I LOVE THE BAHAMAS ALL THE CORAL REEFS AND SAND IT WOULD MAKE ME FEEL IN PARADISE
Solomon
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Nov 30, 2012 @ 3:03 am
I love this country bahamas, can someone give me a contact of any african preferably a nigerian residing in bahamas?- (soldoru@yahoo.com) I want to visit the country soon and I will like to see my fellow african/ nigerian in bahamas, thanks
Dominick Buchanan
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Dec 12, 2014 @ 11:11 am
I love this city so much everybody should come. It will be nice the coral reefs

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