Country Profiles FMCG
With more than 1,000 insight-rich pages covering 81
countries and territories, Country Profiles offer
current and comprehensive business information, from
local laws and taxes to political and market
conditions Make them part of your smart trade
language: English Prime minister: Hubert Ingraham
Commonwealth of the Bahamas
is carried out on small plots throughout most of
the islands. Only about 1% of the land area is
cultivated. The nature of the terrain limits the
scope of farming, which is mainly a household
industry. The main crops are vegetables: onions,
okra, and tomatoes, the last two raised mainly
for export. Inadequate production has
necessitated the import of some 80% of the
islands' food supply. Among steps the government
has taken to expand and improve agriculture is
the reserving of 182,000 hectares (450,000
acres) exclusively for farming, 8,000 hectares
(20,000 acres) of which were converted to fruit
farming. Export-oriented orange, grapefruit, and
cucumber production in Abaco grew as export
demand expanded. However, on Eleuthera, most
agricultural and fishing infrastructure was
seriously damaged by Hurricane Andrew.
Agricultural products in 1999 included 45,000
tons of sugar cane, 14,000 tons of grapefruit,
and 22,000 tons of vegetables.
An archipelago of 700 islands and islets, the Bahamas attracts millions of tourists each year.
The visitors come to enjoy its mild climate, fine beaches and beautiful forests.
A former British colony and now a Commonwealth member, the country is a major centre for offshore finance and has one of the world's largest open-registry shipping fleets.
Head of state: Queen Elizabeth II, represented by Governor-General Arthur D Hanna
Prime minister: Hubert Ingraham
Hubert Ingraham's opposition Free National Movement (FNM) won parliamentary elections in May 2007, securing 23 seats in the 41-seat parliament.
Time-served leader Hubert Ingraham ousted the PLP in 2007
Mr Ingraham, a lawyer, served two terms as prime minister between 1992 and 2002. The FNM had campaigned on issues of trust, criticising the ruling Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) over a series of scandals.
Financial analysts predicted little change in economic policy under the FNM.
Mr Ingraham's predecessor, Perry Christie, took office in May 2002 after the PLP won 29 seats in parliament.
The PLP has dominated Bahamian politics through much of the post-independence era, winning every election from 1973 through to the 1992 poll when voters rejected the late Sir Lynden Pindling and a government accused of corruption and drug trafficking.