Statistical information British Virgin Islands 1995British%20Virgin%20Islands

Map of British Virgin Islands | Geography | People | Government | Economy | Energy | Communication
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British Virgin Islands in the World
British Virgin Islands in the World

World Nomads

British Virgin Islands - Introduction 1995
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Background: First settled by the Dutch in 1648 the islands were soon after (1672) annexed by the English. The economy is closely tied to the larger and more populous US Virgin Islands to the west; the US dollar is the legal currency.

British Virgin Islands - Geography 1995
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Location: Caribbean, between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, east of Puerto Rico

Geographic coordinates

Map referenceCentral America and the Caribbean

Total area total: 150 km²
Land: 150 km²
Comparative: about 0.8 times the size of Washington, DC
Note: includes the island of Anegada

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 80 km

Maritime claims
Exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm
Territorial sea: 3 nm

Climate: subtropical; humid; temperatures moderated by trade winds

Terrain: coral islands relatively flat; volcanic islands steep, hilly


Natural resources: negligible
Land use

Land use
Arable land: 20%
Permanent crops: 7%
Meadows and pastures: 33%
Forest and woodland: 7%
Other: 33%

Irrigated land: NA km²

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards

Note: defense is the responsibility of the UK

British Virgin Islands - People 1995
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Population: 13,027 (July 1995 est.)
Growth rate: 1.27% (1995 est.)

Noun: British Virgin Islander(s)
Adjective: British Virgin Islander

Ethnic groups: black 90%, white, Asian

Languages: English (official)

Religions: Protestant 86% (Methodist 45%, Anglican 21%, Church of God 7%, Seventh-Day Adventist 5%, Baptist 4%, Jehovah's Witnesses 2%, other 2%), Roman Catholic 6%, none 2%, other 6% (1981)

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years: NA
15-64 years: NA
65 years and over: NA

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate: 1.27% (1995 est.)

Birth rate: 20.25 births/1000 population (1995 est.)

Death rate: 6.07 deaths/1000 population (1995 est.)

Net migration rate: -1.5 migrant(s)/1000 population (1995 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: limited natural fresh water resources (except for a few seasonal streams and springs on Tortola, most of the island's water supply comes from wells and rainwater catchment)
Current issues natural hazards: hurricanes and tropical storms (July to October)
Current issues international agreements: NA

Air pollutants

Sex ratio

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 19.33 deaths/1000 live births (1995 est.)

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 72.73 years
Male: 70.88 years
Female: 74.7 years (1995 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.27 children born/woman (1995 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Literacy: age 15 and over can read and write (1970)
Total population: 98%
Male: 98%
Female: 98%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

British Virgin Islands - Government 1995
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Country name
Conventional long form: none
Conventional short form: British Virgin Islands

Government type: dependent territory of the UK

Capital: Road Town

Administrative divisions: none (dependent territory of the UK)

Dependent areas

Independence: none (dependent territory of the UK)

National holiday: Territory Day, 1 July

Constitution: 1 June 1977

Legal system: English law

International law organization participation


Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor Peter Alfred PENFOLD (since 14 October 1991)
Head of government: Chief Minister H. Lavity STOUTT (since NA September 1986)
Cabinet: Executive Council; appointed by the governor

Legislative branch: unicameral
Legislative Council: election last held 20 February 1995 (next to be held on NA February 2000); results - percent of vote by party NA; seats - (13 total) VIP 6, CCM 2, UP 2, independents 3
Note: legislature was expanded to 13 seats as of election on 20 February 1995

Judicial branch: Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: CARICOM (associate), CDB, ECLAC (associate), INTERPOL (subbureau), IOC, OECS (associate), UNESCO (associate)

Diplomatic representation
In the us: none (dependent territory of the UK)
From the us: none (dependent territory of the UK)

Flag descriptionflag of British%20Virgin%20Islands: blue with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and the Virgin Islander coat of arms centered in the outer half of the flag; the coat of arms depicts a woman flanked on either side by a vertical column of six oil lamps above a scroll bearing the Latin word VIGILATE (Be Watchful)

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

British Virgin Islands - Economy 1995
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Economy overview: The economy, one of the most prosperous in the Caribbean area, is highly dependent on the tourist industry, which generates about 21% of the national income. In 1985 the government offered offshore registration to companies wishing to incorporate in the islands, and, in consequence, incorporation fees generated about $2 million in 1987. The economy slowed in 1991 because of the poor performances of the tourist sector and tight commercial bank credit. Livestock raising is the most significant agricultural activity. The islands' crops, limited by poor soils, are unable to meet food requirements.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate: 2% (1991)

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin

Agriculture products: livestock (including poultry), fish, fruit, vegetables

Industries: tourism, light industry, construction, rum, concrete block, offshore financial center

Industrial production growth rate: 4% (1985)

Labor force: 4,911 (1980)
By occupation: NA
Labor force

Unemployment rate: NEGL% (1992)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $51 million
Expenditures: $88 million, including capital expenditures of $38 million (1991)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

Exports: $2.7 million (f.o.b., 1988)
Commodoties: rum, fresh fish, gravel, sand, fruits, animals
Partners: Virgin Islands (US), Puerto Rico, US

Imports: $11.5 million (c.i.f., 1988)
Commodoties: building materials, automobiles, foodstuffs, machinery
Partners: Virgin Islands (US), Puerto Rico, US

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $4.5 million (1985)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: US currency is used

British Virgin Islands - Energy 1995
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 50 million kWh
Consumption per capita: 3,148 kWh (1993)

Electricity consumption

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

British Virgin Islands - Communication 1995
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system: 3,000 telephones; worldwide external telephone service
Local: NA
Intercity: NA
International: submarine cable communication links to Bermuda

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

British Virgin Islands - Military 1995
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Military expenditures

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

British Virgin Islands - Transportation 1995
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 3
With paved runways 914 to 1523 m: 1
With paved runways under 914 m: 1
With unpaved runways 914 to 1523 m: 1

Airports with paved runways
914 to 1523 m: 1
Under 914 m: 1

Airports with unpaved runways
914 to 1523 m: 1






Merchant marine: none

Ports and terminals

British Virgin Islands - Transnational issues 1995
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Disputes international: none

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs


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