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Jamaica Jamaica

CARICOM Youth Ambassador(s)

Simone Townsend

Odayne Haughton

Key facts

Date of Membership in CARICOM: 1 Aug 1973 - Learn more about membership in CARICOM

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


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


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

The Most Hon. Andrew Holness

Prime Minister

Visit Government Portal: http://www.cabinet.gov.jm

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Regional Responsibility

CARICOM Lead Head of Government for External Trade Negotiations

What's New...

Did You Know?

  • Jamaica has more churches per square mile than any other country in the world
  • That Usain Bolt, a Jamaican, was the first athlete ever to set three sprinting world records at a single Olympic Game. He won the 100m, the 200, and the 4x100 relay (37.10 seconds). He also, at the London 2012 Olympics, became the first athlete in history to win the 100m and 200m sprints at successive Olympic Games.