Netherlands Antilles



Official Country Name
Netherlands Antilles

Netherlands Antilles Overview
Once the center of the Caribbean slave trade, the island of Curacao was hard hit by the abolition of slavery in 1863. Its prosperity (and that of neighboring Aruba) was restored in the early 20th century with the construction of oil refineries to service the newly discovered Venezuelan oil fields. The island of Saint Martin is shared with France; its southern portion is named Sint Maarten and is part of the Netherlands Antilles; its northern portion is called Saint-Martin and is part of Guadeloupe (France).

Netherlands Antilles Economy
Tourism, petroleum refining, and offshore finance are the mainstays of this small economy, which is closely tied to the outside world. Although GDP has declined or grown slightly in each of the past eight years, the islands enjoy a high per capita income and a well-developed infrastructure compared with other countries in the region. Almost all consumer and capital goods are imported, the US and Mexico being the major suppliers. Poor soils and inadequate water supplies hamper the development of agriculture. Budgetary problems hamper reform of the health and pension systems of an aging population.

Netherlands Antilles Location
Netherlands Antilles is located in Caribbean, two island groups in the Caribbean Sea - composed of five islands, Curacao and Bonaire located off the coast of Venezuela, and St. Maarten, Saba, and St. Eustatius lie east of the US Virgin Islands

Region
Netherlands Antilles is located in Caribbean

Netherlands Antilles Population
Netherlands Antilles has population of 221,736 (July 2006 est.)

Netherlands Antilles Climate
Netherlands Antilles has tropical; ameliorated by northeast trade winds

Netherlands Antilles Terrain
generally hilly, volcanic interiors

Netherlands Antilles Natural Resources
phosphates (Curacao only), salt (Bonaire only)

Ethnic Groups in Netherlands Antilles
Netherlands Antilles has the following ethnic groups - mixed black 85%, other 15% (includes Carib Amerindian, white, East Asian)

Netherlands Antilles Religions
Roman Catholic 72%, Pentecostal 4.9%, Protestant 3.5%, Seventh-Day Adventist 3.1%, Methodist 2.9%, Jehovah's Witnesses 1.7%, other Christian 4.2%, Jewish 1.3%, other or unspecified 1.2%, none 5.2% (2001 census)

Netherlands Antilles Languages
Papiamento 65.4% (a Spanish-Portuguese-Dutch-English dialect), English 15.9% (widely spoken), Dutch 7.3% (official), Spanish 6.1%, Creole 1.6%, other 1.9%, unspecified 1.8% (2001 census)

Netherlands Antilles Capital
Netherlands Antilles capital is Willemstad (on Curacao)

Netherlands Antilles Currency
Netherlands Antilles currency is Netherlands Antillean guilder

Map of Netherlands Antilles