Statistical information Jamaica 1996Jamaica

Map of Jamaica | Geography | People | Government | Economy | Energy | Communication
Military | Transportation | Transnational Issues | Year:  | More stats

Jamaica in the World
Jamaica in the World


Jamaica - Introduction 1996
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Background: Jamaica gained full independence within the British Commonwealth in 1962. Deteriorating economic conditions during the 1970s led to recurrent violence and a dropoff in tourism. Elections in 1980 saw the democratic socialists voted out of office and a more conservative government installed. Political violence marred elections during the 1990s.

Jamaica - Geography 1996
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Location: Caribbean, island in the Caribbean Sea, south of Cuba

Geographic coordinates

Map reference

Total: 10,990 km²
Land: 10,830 km²
Comparative: slightly smaller than Connecticut

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 1,022 km

Maritime claims
Continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
Exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: Tropical; hot, humid; temperate interior

Terrain: Mostly mountains with narrow, discontinuous coastal plain

Extremes lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
Extremes highest point: Blue Mountain Peak 2,256 m

Natural resources:

Land use

Land use
Arable land: 19%
Permanent crops: 6%
Permanent pastures: 18%
Forests and woodland: 28%
Other: 29%

Irrigated land: 350 km² (1989 est.)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards


Jamaica - People 1996
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2,595,275 (July 1996 est.)
2,574,291 (July 1995 est.)

Growth rate:
0.8% (1996 est.)
0.78% (1995 est.)

Noun: Jamaican(s)
Adjective: Jamaican

Ethnic groups:
African 76.3%
Afro-European 15.1%
East Indian and Afro-East Indian 3%
White 3.2%
Chinese and Afro-Chinese 1.2%
Other 1.2%

Languages: English, Creole

Protestant 55.9% (Church of God 18.4%
Baptist 10%
Anglican 7.1%
Seventh-Day Adventist 6.9%
Pentecostal 5.2%
Methodist 3.1%
United Church 2.7%
Other 2.5%), Roman Catholic 5%
Other, including some spiritual cults 39.1% (1982)

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years:
32% (male 430,609; female 411,966) (July 1996 est.)
33% (male 431,043; female 412,565) (July 1995 est.)

15-64 years:
61% (male 781,626; female 795,808) (July 1996 est.)
60% (male 770,681; female 786,700) (July 1995 est.)

65 years and over:
7% (male 77,725; female 97,541) (July 1996 est.)
7% (female 96,348; male 76,954) (July 1995 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate:
0.8% (1996 est.)
0.78% (1995 est.)

Birth rate:
22.19 births/1000 population (1996 est.)
22.03 births/1000 population (1995 est.)

Death rate:
5.57 deaths/1000 population (1996 est.)
5.62 deaths/1000 population (1995 est.)

Net migration rate:
-8.58 migrant(s)/1000 population (1996 est.)
-8.65 migrant(s)/1000 population (1995 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: deforestation; coastal waters polluted by industrial waste, sewage, and oil spills; damage to coral reefs; air pollution in Kingston results from vehicle emissions
Current issues Natural hazards: hurricanes (especially July to November)
International agreements: party to_Biodiversity, Climate Change, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution
International agreements note: Strategic location between Cayman Trench and Jamaica Channel, the main sea lanes for Panama Canal

Air pollutants

Sex ratio
At birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.8 male(s)/female
All ages:
0.99 male(s)/female (1996 est.) Infant Mortality Rate:15.6 deaths/1000 live births (1996 est.)
16.1 deaths/1000 live births (1995 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 74.88 years (1996 est.), 74.65 years (1995 est.)
Male: 72.6 years (1996 est.), 72.39 years (1995 est.)
Female: 77.29 years (1996 est.), 77.01 years (1995 est.)

Total fertility rate:
2.45 children born/woman (1996 est.)
2.42 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

Definition: age 15 and over that has ever attended school (1995 est.)
Total population: 85%
Male: 80.8%
Female: 89.1%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Jamaica - Government 1996
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Country name
Conventional long form: none
Conventional short form: Jamaica

Government type: Parliamentary democracy

Capital: Kingston

Administrative divisions: 14 parishes; Clarendon, Hanover, Kingston, Manchester, Portland, Saint Andrew, Saint Ann, Saint Catherine, Saint Elizabeth, Saint James, Saint Mary, Saint Thomas, Trelawny, Westmoreland

Dependent areas

Independence: 6 August 1962 (from U.K.)

National holiday: Independence Day (first Monday in August) (1962)

Constitution: 6 August 1962

Legal system: Based on English common law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

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 General Sir Howard COOKE (since 1 August 1991)
Head of government: Prime Minister P. J. PATTERSON (since 30 March 1992); Deputy Prime Minister Seymour MULLINGS (since NA 1993)
Cabinet: Cabinet; appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister

Legislative branch: Bicameral Parliament Senate:Consists of a 21-member body appointed by the governor general House of Representatives:Elections last held 30 March 1993 (next to be held by March 1998; results_percent of vote by party NA; seats_(60 total) PNP 52, JLP 8

Judicial branch: Supreme Court

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: ACP, C, Caricom, CCC, CDB, ECLAC, FAO, G-15, G-19, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, LAES, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNMIH, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation

Flag descriptionflag of Jamaica: Diagonal yellow cross divides the flag into four triangles_green (top and bottom) and black (hoist side and fly side)

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Jamaica - Economy 1996
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Economy overview: Key sectors in this island economy are bauxite (alumina and bauxite account for more than half of exports) and tourism. Since assuming office in 1992, Prime Minister PATTERSON has consolidated the market-oriented reforms initiated by his predecessor, Michael MANLEY, to make Jamaica a regional leader in economic reform. PATTERSON has eliminated most price controls, streamlined tax schedules, and privatized government enterprises. Tight monetary and fiscal policies under an IMF program have helped slow inflation and stabilize the exchange rate, but, as a result, economic growth has slowed down and unemployment remains high. Jamaica's medium-term prospects depend largely on its ability to continue to attract foreign capital and limit speculation against the Jamaican dollar.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate:
0.8% (1995 est.)
2% (1994 est.)

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: Accounts for about 7% of GDP, 22% of work force, and 17% of exports; commercial crops_sugarcane, bananas, coffee, citrus, potatoes, vegetables; livestock and livestock products include poultry, goats, milk; not self-sufficient in grain, meat, and dairy products

Bauxite mining
Food processing
Light manufactures

Industrial production growth rate: Growth rate 0.4% (1992; accounts for almost 30% of GDP

Labor force: 1,062,100
By occupation Services: 41%
By occupation Agriculture: 22.5%
By occupation Industry: 19%
By occupation Unemployed: 17.5% (1989)
Labor force

Unemployment rate:
15.4% (1994 est.)
15.7% (1992)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $1.45 billion (FY95/96), $600 million (FY90/91)
Expenditures: $2 billion, including capital expenditures of $732 million (FY95/96 est.), $736 million, including capital expenditures of NA (FY90/91 est.)

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

total value. $2 billion (f.o.b., 1995 est.)
$1.2 billion (f.o.b., 1994 est.)


U.S. 47%
U.K. 11%
Canada 9%
Norway 7%; France 4% (1993)

Total value:
$2.7 billion (f.o.b., 1995 est.)
$2.2 billion (f.o.b., 1994 est.)

Machinery and transport equipment
Construction materials

U.S. 54%
Japan 4.0%
Mexico 6%
U.K. 4%
Venezuela 3% (1993)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $3.6 billion (1994 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: Jamaican dollars (J$) per US$1_39.86 (December 1995), 33.086 (1994), 24.949 (1993), 22.960 (1992), 12.116 (1991), 7.184 (1990)

Jamaica - Energy 1996
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 2.6 billion kWh

Electricity consumption
Per capita: 988 kWh (1993)

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

Jamaica - Communication 1996
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system: 212,257 telephones (1991 est.); fully automatic domestic telephone network
Local: NA
Intercity: NA
International: 2 INTELSAT (Atlantic Ocean) earth stations; 3 coaxial submarine cables

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Jamaica - Military 1996
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Military expenditures
Dollar figure: $30 million, NA% of GDP (FY95/96), $19.3 million, 1% of GDP (FY91/92)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Jamaica - Transportation 1996
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 27
2438 to 3047 m: 2
914 to 1523 m: 1 (1995 est.)
Under 914 m: 21

Airports with paved runways

Airports with unpaved runways


Pipelines: Petroleum products 10 km




Merchant marine
Total: 2 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 3,435 GRT/6,105 DWT
Ships by type: oil tanker 1, roll-on/roll-off cargo 1 (1995 est.)

Ports and terminals

Jamaica - Transnational issues 1996
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Disputes international

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs: Transshipment point for cocaine from Central and South America to North America and Europe; illicit cultivation of cannabis; government has an active cannabis eradication program


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