Browse Country Profiles

Antigua and Barbuda

Key facts

Date of Membership in CARICOM: 4 Jul 1974 – Learn more about membership in CARICOM

Also Known as:The Island of 365 Beaches. (Root: Waladli and Wa’onomi (Amerindian))

Status of Independence:Independent 1981/11/01

Area: 442 km2 (170 miles2)

Capital City: St. John’s

Population: : 90,801(2015)

Currency: Eastern Caribbean Dollar (EC$)

Highest National Award: Order of the Nation


GDP Growth: GDP Growth: –3.6% p.a. 2009–13

GNI: GNI: US$1.2bn

GNI PC: GNI PC: US$12,910

Key dates in history

1493      Arrival of Columbus; named island after Cathedral in Spain – Santa Maria de La Antigua

1632      Colonised by Sir Thomas Warner

1667      Island formally  became a British Colony

1871      Incorporated into Leeward Islands Federation

1939      First Labour Movement formed – Antigua Trades and Labour Union (ATLU) out of which evolved ALP

1951      First elections under universal adult suffrage took place

1958      Member of the West Indies Federation

1965      CARIFTA Agreement signed at Dickenson Bay, Antigua. Antigua and Barbuda one of three original signatories

1967      Associated Statehood with Britain (full internal self government) within the West Indies Associated States  (WISA) Vere C. Bird, Snr, first Premier

1981      Independence achieved. Vere C. Bird, Snr. First Prime Minister

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