- Art Gallery -

 

.

Trinidad and Tobago

Trinidad and Tobago (Central America and Caribbean)

Introduction ::Trinidad and Tobago

Background:

First colonized by the Spanish, the islands came under British control in the early 19th century. The islands' sugar industry was hurt by the emancipation of the slaves in 1834. Manpower was replaced with the importation of contract laborers from India between 1845 and 1917, which boosted sugar production as well as the cocoa industry. The discovery of oil on Trinidad in 1910 added another important export. Independence was attained in 1962. The country is one of the most prosperous in the Caribbean thanks largely to petroleum and natural gas production and processing. Tourism, mostly in Tobago, is targeted for expansion and is growing. The government is coping with a rise in violent crime.

Geography ::Trinidad and Tobago


View Larger Map

Location:

Caribbean, islands between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic
Ocean, northeast of Venezuela

Geographic coordinates:
11 00 N, 61 00 W

Map references:

Central America and the Caribbean

Area:

total: 5,128 sq km country comparison to the world: 173 land: 5,128 sq km

water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative:

slightly smaller than Delaware

Land boundaries:

0 km

Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago

Coastline:

362 km

Maritime claims:

measured from claimed archipelagic baselines

territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200 nm or to the outer edge of the continental margin

Climate:

tropical; rainy season (June to December)

Terrain:

mostly plains with some hills and low mountains

Elevation extremes:

lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m

highest point: El Cerro del Aripo 940 m

Natural resources:

petroleum, natural gas, asphalt

Multiview of Creatures of the Coral Reef

Land use:

arable land: 14.62%

permanent crops: 9.16%

other: 76.22% (2005)

Irrigated land:

40 sq km (2003)

Total renewable water resources:

3.8 cu km (2000)

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):

total: 0.31 cu km/yr (68%/26%/6%)

per capita: 237 cu m/yr (2000)

Natural hazards:

outside usual path of hurricanes and other tropical storms

Environment - current issues:

water pollution from agricultural chemicals, industrial wastes, and raw sewage; oil pollution of beaches; deforestation; soil erosion

Environment - international agreements:

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note:

Pitch Lake, on Trinidad's southwestern coast, is the world's largest natural reservoir of asphalt

People ::Trinidad and Tobago

Population:

1,228,691 (July 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 155

Age structure:

0-14 years: 19.6% (male 123,214/female 117,584)

15-64 years: 72.6% (male 457,868/female 434,486)

65 years and over: 7.9% (male 41,467/female 55,334) (2010 est.)

Median age:

total: 32.6 years

male: 32.1 years

female: 33.1 years (2010 est.)

Population growth rate:

-0.094% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 209

Birth rate:

14.37 births/1,000 population (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 145

Death rate:

8.21 deaths/1,000 population (July 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 99

Net migration rate:

-7.11 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 208

Urbanization:

urban population: 13% of total population (2008)

rate of urbanization: 2.9% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)

Sex ratio:

at birth: 1.028 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 1.06 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.75 male(s)/female

total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2010 est.)

Infant mortality rate:

total: 28.9 deaths/1,000 live births country comparison to the world: 75 male: 30.12 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 27.65 deaths/1,000 live births (2010 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:

total population: 71.09 years country comparison to the world: 134 male: 68.23 years

female: 74.02 years (2010 est.)

Total fertility rate:

1.72 children born/woman (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 167

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:

1.5% (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 44

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:

14,000 (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 90

HIV/AIDS - deaths:

1,900 (2003 est.) country comparison to the world: 61

Nationality:

noun: Trinidadian(s), Tobagonian(s)

adjective: Trinidadian, Tobagonian

Ethnic groups:

Indian (South Asian) 40%, African 37.5%, mixed 20.5%, other 1.2%, unspecified 0.8% (2000 census)

Religions:

Roman Catholic 26%, Hindu 22.5%, Anglican 7.8%, Baptist 7.2%,
Pentecostal 6.8%, Muslim 5.8%, Seventh Day Adventist 4%, other
Christian 5.8%, other 10.8%, unspecified 1.4%, none 1.9% (2000
census)

Languages:

English (official), Caribbean Hindustani (a dialect of Hindi),
French, Spanish, Chinese

Literacy:

definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 98.6%

male: 99.1%

female: 98% (2003 est.)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):

total: 11 years

male: 11 years

female: 12 years (2005)

Education expenditures:

4.2% of GDP (2002) country comparison to the world: 102

People - note:

in 2007, the government of Trinidad and Tobago estimated the population to be 1.3 million

Government ::Trinidad and Tobago

Country name:

conventional long form: Republic of Trinidad and Tobago

conventional short form: Trinidad and Tobago

Government type:

parliamentary democracy

Capital:

name: Port-of-Spain

geographic coordinates: 10 39 N, 61 31 W

time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions:

9 regional corporations, 2 city corporations, 3 borough corporations, 1 ward

regional corporations: Couva/Tabaquite/Talparo, Diego Martin, Mayaro/Rio Claro, Penal/Debe, Princes Town, Sangre Grande, San Juan/Laventille, Siparia, Tunapuna/Piarco

city corporations: Port-of-Spain, San Fernando

borough corporations: Arima, Chaguanas, Point Fortin

ward: Tobago

Independence:

31 August 1962 (from the UK)

National holiday:

Independence Day, 31 August (1962)

Constitution:

1 August 1976

Legal system:

based on English common law; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage:

18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:

chief of state: President George Maxwell RICHARDS (since 17 March 2003)

head of government: Prime Minister Kamla PERSAD-BISSESSAR (since 26 May 2010)

cabinet: Cabinet appointed from among the members of Parliament (For more information visit the World Leaders website ) elections: president elected by an electoral college, which consists of the members of the Senate and House of Representatives, for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 11 February 2008 (next to be held by February 2013); the president usually appoints as prime minister the leader of the majority party in the House of Representatives

election results: George Maxwell RICHARDS reelected president; percent of electoral college vote - NA

Legislative branch:

bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (31 seats; 16 members appointed by the ruling party, 9 by the President, 6 by the opposition party to serve a maximum term of five years) and the House of Representatives (41 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)

elections: House of Representatives - last held on 24 May 2010 (next to be held in 2015)

election results: House of Representatives - percent of vote - NA; seats by party - UNC 21, PNM 12, COP 6, TOP 2

note: Tobago has a unicameral House of Assembly with 12 members serving four-year terms; last election held in January 2005; seats by party - PNM 11, DAC 1

Judicial branch:

Supreme Court of Judicature (comprised of the High Court of Justice and the Court of Appeals; the chief justice is appointed by the president after consultation with the prime minister and the leader of the opposition; other justices are appointed by the president on the advice of the Judicial and Legal Service Commission); the highest court of appeal is the Privy Council in London; member of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ)

Political parties and leaders:

Congress of the People or COP [Winston DOOKERAN]; Democratic Action
Congress or DAC [Hochoy CHARLES] (only active in Tobago); Democratic
National Alliance or DNA [Gerald YETMING] (coalition of NAR, DDPT,
MND); Movement for National Development or MND [Garvin NICHOLAS];
National Alliance for Reconstruction or NAR [Dr. Carson CHARLES];
People's National Movement or PNM [Patrick MANNING]; Tobago
Organization of the People or TOP [Ashworth JACK]; United National
Congress or UNC [Kamla PERSAD-BISSESSAR]

Political pressure groups and leaders:

Jamaat-al Muslimeen [Yasin ABU BAKR]

International organization participation:

ACP, AOSIS, C, Caricom, CDB, FAO, G-24, G-77, IADB, IBRD, ICAO,
ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol,
IOC, IOM, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, LAES, MIGA, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW,
Paris Club (associate), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU,
WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US:

chief of mission: Ambassador vacant; Charge d'Affaires Donna HENRY

chancery: 1708 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036

telephone: [1] (202) 467-6490
FAX: [1] (202) 785-3130

consulate(s) general: Miami, New York

Diplomatic representation from the US:

chief of mission: Ambassador Beatrice W. WELTERS

embassy: 15 Queen's Park West, Port-of-Spain

mailing address: P. O. Box 752, Port-of-Spain

telephone: [1] (868) 622-6371 through 6376
FAX: [1] (868) 822-5905

Flag description:

red with a white-edged black diagonal band from the upper hoist side to the lower fly side; the colors represent the elements of earth, water, and fire; black stands for the wealth of the land and the dedication of the people; white symbolizes the sea surrounding the islands, the purity of the country's aspirations, and equality; red symbolizes the warmth and energy of the sun, the vitality of the land, and the courage and friendliness of its people

National anthem:

name: "Forged From the Love of Liberty"

lyrics/music: Patrick Stanislaus CASTAGNE

note: adopted 1962; the song was originally created to serve as an anthem for the West Indies Federation; it was adopted by Trinidad and Tobago following the Federation's dissolution in 1962

Economy ::Trinidad and Tobago

Economy - overview:

Trinidad and Tobago has earned a reputation as an excellent investment site for international businesses and has one of the highest growth rates and per capita incomes in Latin America. Economic growth between 2000 and 2007 averaged slightly over 8%, significantly above the regional average of about 3.7% for that same period; however, GDP has slowed down since then and contracted about 3.5% in 2009, before rising more than 2% in 2010. Growth has been fueled by investments in liquefied natural gas (LNG), petrochemicals, and steel. Additional petrochemical, aluminum, and plastics projects are in various stages of planning. Trinidad and Tobago is the leading Caribbean producer of oil and gas, and its economy is heavily dependent upon these resources but it also supplies manufactured goods, notably food products and beverages, as well as cement to the Caribbean region. Oil and gas account for about 40% of GDP and 80% of exports, but only 5% of employment. The country is also a regional financial center, and tourism is a growing sector, although it is not as important domestically as it is to many other Caribbean islands. The economy benefits from a growing trade surplus. The previous MANNING administration benefited from fiscal surpluses fueled by the dynamic export sector; however, declines in oil and gas prices have reduced government revenues which will challenge the new government's commitment to maintaining high levels of public investment.

GDP (purchasing power parity):

$27.1 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 111 $26.54 billion (2009 est.)

$27.42 billion (2008 est.)

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate):

$21.2 billion (2010 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:

2.1% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 145 -3.2% (2009 est.)

3.5% (2008 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP):

$22,100 (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 58 $21,600 (2009 est.)

$22,300 (2008 est.)

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector:

agriculture: 0.5%

industry: 59.4%

services: 40.1% (2010 est.)

Labor force:

631,000 (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 153

Labor force - by occupation:

agriculture: 3.8%

manufacturing, mining, and quarrying: 12.8%

construction and utilities: 20.4%

services: 62.9% (2007 est.)

Unemployment rate:

6.4% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 62 5.8% (2009 est.)

Population below poverty line:

17% (2007 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:

lowest 10%: NA%

highest 10%: NA%

Investment (gross fixed):

11.6% of GDP (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 148

Public debt:

26.4% of GDP (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 92 29% of GDP (2009 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

11.3% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 203 7% (2009 est.)

Central bank discount rate:

7.25% (31 December 2009) country comparison to the world: 41 10.75% (31 December 2008)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:

11.94% (31 December 2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 69 12.44% (31 December 2008 est.)

Stock of narrow money:

$3.734 billion (31 December 2010 est) country comparison to the world: 102 $3.407 billion (31 December 2009 est)

Stock of broad money:

$12.47 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 94 $11.35 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of domestic credit:

$2.924 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 119 $2.823 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:

$11.15 billion (31 December 2009) country comparison to the world: 65 $12.16 billion (31 December 2008)

$15.61 billion (31 December 2007)

Agriculture - products:

cocoa, rice, citrus, coffee, vegetables; poultry

Industries:

petroleum and petroleum products, liquefied natural gas (LNG), methanol, ammonia, urea, steel products, beverages, food processing, cement, cotton textiles

Industrial production growth rate:

2.5% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 122

Electricity - production:

7.202 billion kWh (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 101

Electricity - consumption:

7.034 billion kWh (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 99

Electricity - exports:

0 kWh (2008 est.)

Electricity - imports:

0 kWh (2008 est.)

Oil - production:

151,600 bbl/day (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 45

Oil - consumption:

43,000 bbl/day (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 100

Oil - exports:

248,300 bbl/day (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 47

Oil - imports:

92,480 bbl/day (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 65

Oil - proved reserves:

728.3 million bbl (1 January 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 42

Natural gas - production:

39.3 billion cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 21

Natural gas - consumption:

21.94 billion cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 32

Natural gas - exports:

17.36 billion cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 13

Natural gas - imports:

0 cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 122

Natural gas - proved reserves:

436.1 billion cu m (1 January 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 33

Current account balance:

$3.363 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 37 $1.702 billion (2009 est.)

Exports:

$12.06 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 80 $9.312 billion (2009 est.)

Exports - commodities:

petroleum and petroleum products, liquefied natural gas (LNG), methanol, ammonia, urea, steel products, beverages, cereal and cereal products, sugar, cocoa, coffee, citrus fruit, vegetables, flowers

Exports - partners:

US 38.53%, Jamaica 8.86%, Spain 6.88%, Mexico 6.23% (2009)

Imports:

$8.234 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 98 $7.161 billion (2009 est.)

Imports - commodities:

mineral fuels, lubricants, machinery, transportation equipment, manufactured goods, food, chemicals, live animals

Imports - partners:

US 30.87%, Colombia 7.1%, Venezuela 7.01%, Russia 6.64%, Brazil 5.53%, China 4.19% (2009)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:

$9.659 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 55 $9.246 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Debt - external:

$4.303 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 111 $3.895 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:

$102 billion (31 December 2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 32 $12.44 billion (2007)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:

$3.829 billion (2007) country comparison to the world: 62

Exchange rates:

Trinidad and Tobago dollars (TTD) per US dollar - 6.3337 (2010), 6.3099 (2009), 6.2896 (2008), 6.3275 (2007), 6.3107 (2006)

Communications ::Trinidad and Tobago

Telephones - main lines in use:

314,800 (2009) country comparison to the world: 111

Telephones - mobile cellular:

1.97 million (2009) country comparison to the world: 133

Telephone system:

general assessment: excellent international service; good local service

domestic: mobile-cellular teledensity roughly 185 telephones per 100 persons

international: country code - 1-868; submarine cable systems provide connectivity to US and parts of the Caribbean and South America; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); tropospheric scatter to Barbados and Guyana

Broadcast media:

5 TV networks each broadcasting on multiple stations; one of the networks is state-owned; multiple cable TV subscription service providers; multiple radio networks, one state-owned, broadcast over about 35 stations (2007)

Internet country code:

.tt

Internet hosts:

168,876 (2010) country comparison to the world: 68

Internet users:

593,000 (2009) country comparison to the world: 115

Transportation ::Trinidad and Tobago

Airports:

6 (2010) country comparison to the world: 176

Airports - with paved runways:

total: 3

over 3,047 m: 1

2,438 to 3,047 m: 1

1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2010)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

total: 3

914 to 1,523 m: 1

under 914 m: 2 (2010)

Pipelines:

gas 659 km; oil 336 km (2009)

Roadways:

total: 8,320 km country comparison to the world: 140 paved: 4,252 km

unpaved: 4,068 km (2000)

Merchant marine:

total: 6 country comparison to the world: 127 by type: passenger 1, passenger/cargo 4, petroleum tanker 1

registered in other countries: 2 (Bahamas 1, unknown 1) (2010)

Ports and terminals:

Point Fortin, Point Lisas, Port-of-Spain, Scarborough

Military ::Trinidad and Tobago

Military branches:

Trinidad and Tobago Defense Force (TTDF): Trinidad and Tobago Army,
Coast Guard, Air Guard, Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (2010)

Military service age and obligation:

18 years of age for voluntary military service (16 years of age with parental consent); no conscription (2010)

Manpower available for military service:

males age 16-49: 347,044

females age 16-49: 323,847 (2010 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:

males age 16-49: 273,361

females age 16-49: 266,535 (2010 est.)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:

male: 8,572

female: 7,966 (2010 est.)

Military expenditures:

0.3% of GDP (2006) country comparison to the world: 170

Transnational Issues ::Trinidad and Tobago

Disputes - international:

in April 2006, the Permanent Court of Arbitration issued a decision that delimited a maritime boundary with Trinidad and Tobago and compelled Barbados to enter a fishing agreement that limited Barbadian fishermen's catches of flying fish in Trinidad and Tobago's exclusive economic zone; in 2005, Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago agreed to compulsory international arbitration under UNCLOS challenging whether the northern limit of Trinidad and Tobago's and Venezuela's maritime boundary extends into Barbadian waters; Guyana has also expressed its intention to include itself in the arbitration as the Trinidad and Tobago-Venezuela maritime boundary may extend into its waters as well

Illicit drugs:

transshipment point for South American drugs destined for the US and Europe; producer of cannabis

World

Hellenica World

Index