Part 1: The Country Report
Jamaica is the largest of the island countries located in the West Indies. With a population of approximately 2.7 million people, the country is slightly diverse. Most of the population, 91 percent, is primarily of African or mixed African-European origin, descended from slaves brought to the island between the 17th and 19th centuries1. The minorities include East Indians, Europeans, and Chinese. The country is half urban and half rural with the largest cities being Kingston, the capital city, Spanish Town and Montego Bay. The population of these cities is one-third the entire population of the country. Most people are Protestants, with a combined 40 percent of the people being Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, or Hindu.
Jamaica's economy revolves greatly around tourism, the island's largest earner of income. The Gross Domestic Product of this relatively developed country in U.S. dollars for 2000 was $7.4 billion2. Of that, tourism and its related services made up 62 percent.
Industry, agriculture, forestry and fishing rounded out the remaining 38 percent. Jamaica's most important export crop is sugarcane, from which rum and molasses are also made. The nation's other agricultural exports include the famed Blue Mountain coffee, bananas, citrus fruits, ginger, cocoa, pimento, and tobacco. Most of these crops are grown on large plantations. Small peasant farms produce some ginger, bananas, and sugarcane for export but mainly raise such subsistence crops as yams, breadfruit, and cassava. Mining is another major source of wealth; since large, easily accessible deposits of bauxite were discovered in 1942, Jamaica has become one of the world's leading suppliers of this ore. Along with the alumina made from it, bauxite accounts for almost half of Jamaica's foreign export. Clothing is the primary export item of the manufacturing sector. Jamaica's other industries (mainly concentrated in the Kingston area)...