Antigua and Barbuda 2018
Antigua and Barbuda. The parliamentary election, which was to be held by the Constitution by June 2019, was preceded by Prime Minister Gaston Browne and conducted in March 2018. The reason, according to Browne, was that he needed to assure investors of stability in the country in the coming years. The election was a success for the ruling Labor Party (ABLP), which strengthened its hold over Parliament’s lower house and received 15 of the 17 seats in total. The United Progress Party (UP), which won the election as late as 2009, and the Barbuda People’s Movement (BPM) were given a mandate each. Maria Bird-Browne, married to Prime Minister Browne and grandson of ABLP’s founder and first Prime Minister Vere Cornwall Bird, became the youngest member of parliament in his country’s history for 26 years.
- According to Abbreviationfinder: ATG is an three letter acronym for Antigua and Barbuda.
According to Countryaah.com, Saint John’s is the capital city of Antigua and Barbuda, a country located in North America. Major investments in the tourism industry continued and in October it was announced that one of the 15 new hotels that have been approved to be built will be the Caribbean’s first Waldorf Astoria hotel.
Antigua and Barbuda Geopolitics
Antigua and Barbuda are two small islands in Caribbean Central America. Since independence, achieved in 1981, the country has established friendly relations with the United States, which have often helped the small island state in the development of the economy and in the reconstruction following various natural disasters and, at the same time, in monitoring constant of the country’s financial services, often used as a tax haven by banks and multinational corporations. Antigua and Barbuda is a member of numerous regional organizations such as the Caribbean Community (Caricom), the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), the Organization of American States (Oas) and the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (Alba). In addition, the country maintains friendly relations with other Latin American states, with Canada and with China. A former English colony and member of the Commonwealth, Antigua and Barbuda is a parliamentary democracy whose head of state is Queen Elizabeth II of England, represented by Governor General Sir Rodney Williams. The legal system is based on the Anglo-Saxon Common Law. The bicameral parliament is composed of the House of Representatives (17 seats), whose members are elected by universal suffrage for five years, and the Senate (17 seats), whose delegates are appointed by the governor general. The latest elections were held in June 2014, and saw Gaston Browne, the leader of the Antigua Labor Party (Alp), dominate the United Progressive Party (Upp), in power since the 2004 elections with former premier Winston Baldwin Spencer.. The political situation is quite stable, although characterized by numerous episodes of corruption and scandals.
The population has predominantly African and, to a lesser extent, European (English and Portuguese) and Arab origins. The majority of the population is Christian (75% Anglicans, 11% Evangelicals, 10% Catholics) while the remaining 4% belongs to other confessions (3% to Rastafarianism and 1% to spiritism and animism). With per capita income of just under $ 23,500 in 2015, Antigua and Barbuda has a relatively higher GDP than the average of its Caribbean neighbors. The literacy rate is 99%, 98% of the population has access to adequate water facilities and 64% has access to the Internet.
The economy of Antigua and Barbuda is mainly based on services: tourism plays a predominant role, but other sectors have also experienced strong development, such as government services and off-shore financial services. A notable item of revenue is represented by online gambling. However, the country’s dependence on tourism (mainly American) entails a great vulnerability of the economy to natural disasters (the country has been repeatedly hit by hurricanes such as in the case of Hurricane Luis which, in 1995, destroyed three quarters of the Antigua) and external factors, such as the recent global economic crisis; hence the need for greater diversification of the economy.
In 2000, Antigua and Barbuda was included in a list of tax havens drawn up by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), but the country subsequently committed to ensuring greater transparency. In addition, the OECD has set up a task force for money laundering resulting from drug trafficking and organized crime; together with the USA, Antigua and Barbuda has taken measures to counter the phenomenon.
The major trading partners include the US, the European Union (Eu) and China. Antigua and Barbuda is part of the Caribbean Forum (Cariforum), a sub-group of ACP countries (Africa, Caribbean, Pacific); as such, it has commercial and development cooperation relations with the European Union, which were explained in the signing of an Economic Partnership Agreement in 2008. There are no direct threats to national security, the defense includes a staff of 170 units and 75 reservists, military service is not compulsory and military spending amounts to about 0.5% of GDP.