General: An island with an excellent natural harbor at Castries was disputed between Britain and France during the 17th and early 18th centuries. (changing affiliation 14 times); finally ceded to Great Britain in 1814. Self-government was granted in 1967, independence – in 1979.
Location: Caribbean region, an island between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, north of Trinidad and Tobago.
Geographic coordinates: 13° 53′ N. latitude, 60° 68′ W e.
Reference map: Central America and the Caribbean.
Area: total: 620 sq. km.; land surface area: 610 km2; water surface area: 10 sq. km.
Comparative area: 3.5 times the area of Washington, DC.
Land borders: 0 km.
Coastline: 158 km.
Maritime claims: neutral waters: 24 nautical miles; continental shelf: 200 nautical miles or to the outer limit of the continent; exclusive economic zone: 200 nautical miles; territorial waters: 12 nautical miles.
Climate: tropical, moderated by northeast trade winds; dry season from January to April, rainy season from May to August.
Terrain: Volcanic and mountainous, with several wide fertile valleys.
Maximum and minimum heights: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m; highest point: Mount Jimi 950 m.
Natural resources: forests, sandy beaches, pumice stone, mineral water springs, geothermal potential.
Land use: arable land: 8%; cultivated land: 21%; pastures: 5%; forests and plantations: 13%; others: 53% (1993 est.).
Irrigated land: 10 sq. km. (1993 est.).
Natural hazards: hurricanes and volcanic activity.
Current environmental issues: deforestation; soil erosion, especially in the northern part of the island.
International environmental conventions: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Change, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Pollution, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Whaling; signed but not ratified: Kyoto Protocol.
Note to the section “Geography”:
Population: 158,178 (July 2001 est.).
Age structure: under 14: 32.13% (male 25,951; female 24,874); 15 to 64 years old: 62.59% (male 48,568; female 50,430); over 65: 5.28% (male 3,120; female 5,235) (2001 est.).
Population growth: 1.23% (2001 est.).
Birth rate: 21.8 newborns / 1000 people. (2001 est.).
Mortality: 5.36 deaths / 1000 people. (2001 est.).
Migration: -4.15 people / 1000 people (2001 est.).
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.07 male/female; under 15: 1.04 male/female; 15 to 64 years old: 0.96 male/female; over 65: 0.6 male/female; for the general population: 0.96 male/female (2001 est.);
Child mortality: 15.22 deaths/1000 births (2001 est.).
Life expectancy: for the general population: 72.57 years; men: 69 years; women: 76.39 years (2001 est.).
Total fertility rate: 2.38 children/wives. (2001 est.).
Proportion of the adult population infected with HIV: no data available.
Number of people infected with HIV: no data.
Mortality due to AIDS: no data available.
Nationality: noun: Saint Lucian; adjective: referring to Saint Lucia.
Ethnic groups: Black 90%, Mixed 6%, East Indian 3%, White 1%.
Believers: Catholics 90%, Protestants 7%, Anglicans 3%.
Languages): English (official), local dialect of French.
Literacy: definition: persons aged 15 and over who have ever attended school; for the general population: 67%; men: 65%; women: 69% (1980 est.).
Common long form: no;
Common short form: Saint Lucia.
State structure: parliamentary democracy like the English one. See politicsezine.com to know more about Saint Lucia Political System.
Administrative division: 11 districts: Anse-la-Rei, Vieux-Fort, Gros-Islet, Dennery, Dauphine, Castries, Laborie, Micou, Pralin, Soufriere, Choiseul.
Independence: from February 22, 1979 (until 1979 – a state associated with Great Britain).
National holiday: Independence Day, February 22 (1979).
Constitution: adopted February 22, 1979.
Legal system: based on English common law.
Suffrage: from 18 years old; universal.
chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor General Dr. Pearlette LOUISY (since September 1997);
head of government: Prime Minister Kenneth ANTHONY (since 24 May 1997), Deputy Prime Minister Mario MICHEL (since 24 May 1997);
government: cabinet appointed by the governor-general on the nomination of the prime minister; elections: no; hereditary monarchy; the governor general is appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the governor general usually appoints the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition as prime minister.
Legislature: The bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (11 seats; 6 members are appointed on the nomination of the Prime Minister, three – on the nomination of the leader of the opposition, two – after consultation with religious, economic and social groups) and the House of Assembly (17 seats; members are elected by universal suffrage by single-member districts for five years) elections: House of Assembly – last held 23 May 1997 (next to be held in 2002); election results: House of Assembly, distribution of votes between parties: NA; seats by party: SLP 16, UWP 1
Judiciary: Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (jurisdiction extends to Anguile, Antigua and Barbuda, British Virgin Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint – Vincent and the Grenadines).
Political parties and leaders: National Freedom Party (NFP) (Martinus FRANCOIS); St. Lucia Labor Party (SLP) (Kenneth ANTHONY); United Workers’ Party (UWP) (Dr. Morella JOSEPH).
Political influence groups and their leaders:
Participation in international organizations: ACCT (associate), ACP, C, Caricom, CDB, ECLAC, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), Interpol, IOC, ISO (subscriber), ITU, NAM, OAS, OECS, OPANAL, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO.
Diplomatic representation in the USA: Head of Mission: Ambassador So-nia Merlyn JOHNNY; office: 3216 New Mexico Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20016; phone:  (202) 364-6792 to 364-6795; fax:  (202) 364-6728; consulates general: New York.
US Diplomatic Mission: The US does not have an embassy in Saint Lucia; the US Ambassador to Barbados is accredited to Saint Lucia.
Description of the flag: blue, with a golden isosceles triangle in the center, on which is superimposed a black arrowhead with the point pointing upwards; the upper edges of the tip have a white border.