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Careers, Jobs and Education Resources for: Barbados

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The island was uninhabited when first settled by the British in 1627. Slaves worked the sugar plantations established on the island until 1834 when slavery was abolished. The economy remained heavily dependent on sugar, rum, and molasses production through most of the 20th century. The gradual introduction of social and political reforms in the 1940s and 1950s led to complete independence from the UK in 1966. In the 1990s, tourism and manufacturing surpassed the sugar industry in economic importance. (from the CIA)


Economic Overview

Historically, the barbadian economy was dependent on sugarcane cultivation and related activities. however, production in recent years has diversified into light industry and tourism, with about three-quarters of gdp and 80% of exports being attributed to services. growth has rebounded since 2003, bolstered by increases in construction projects and tourism revenues - reflecting its success in the higher-end segment. the country enjoys one of the highest per capita incomes in the region and an investment grade rating which benefits from its political stability and stable institutions. offshore finance and information services are important foreign exchange earners and thrive from having the same time zone as eastern us financial centers and a relatively highly educated workforce. the government continues its efforts to reduce unemployment, to encourage direct foreign investment, and to privatize remaining state-owned enterprises.

Environmental Issues

Pollution of coastal waters from waste disposal by ships; soil erosion; illegal solid waste disposal threatens contamination of aquifers

Government Type

Parliamentary democracy


281,968 (july 2008 est.)


Caribbean, island in the north atlantic ocean, northeast of venezuela


Total: 431 sq km land: 431 sq km water: 0 sq km

2.5 times the size of washington, dc

Country Aliases

Conventional long form: none conventional short form: barbados


Name: bridgetown geographic coordinates: 13 06 n, 59 37 w time difference: utc-4 (1 hour ahead of washington, dc during standard time)

Military Service

18 years of age for voluntary military service (younger requires parental consent); no conscription (2008)

International Disputes

Barbados and trinidad and tobago abide by the april 2006 permanent court of arbitration decision delimiting a maritime boundary and limiting catches of flying fish in trinidad and tobago's exclusive economic zone; joins other caribbean states to counter venezuela's claim that aves island sustains human habitation, a criterion under the un convention on the law of the sea (unclos), which permits venezuela to extend its eez/continental shelf over a large portion of the eastern caribbean sea

Sources: Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)

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