Jamaica

Key facts

Date of Membership in CARICOM: 1 Aug 1973

Also Known as:Land of Wood and Water (Root: Xaymaca (Arawak))

Status of Independence:Independent 1962/08/06

Area: 10,991 km2 (4,244 miles2)

Capital City: Kingston

Population: 2,687,200 (2008)

Currency: Jamaica Dollar

Highest National Award: Order of the National Hero

Economy

GDP: EC$41,275 Mn (2012)

GDP Growth: 0.5% p.a. 1990–2012

GNI: US$13.7bn

GNI PC: US$5,220

Key dates in history

SOME KEY DATES IN HISTORY

1494    Arrival of Columbus on island Arawak Indians called `Xaymaca’ (meaning land of wood and water)
1509    Occupation by Spain
1655    Captured by Britain
1692    Famous buccaneer town, Port Royal, destroyed by earthquake
1907    Capital, Kingston, severely damaged by another earthquake
1930    Framework for modern political system laid
1958    Joined the West Indies Federation
1962    Independence achieved. Rt Excellent Sir William Alexander Bustamante, first Prime Minister

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