U.S. Virgin Islands Population: 106,977


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The Danes secured control over the southern Virgin Islands of Saint Thomas, Saint John, and Saint Croix during the 17th and early 18th centuries. Sugarcane, produced by African slave labor, drove the islands' economy during the 18th and early 19th centuries. In 1917, the US purchased the Danish holdings, which had been in economic decline since the abolition of slavery in 1848. On 6 September 2017, Hurricane Irma passed over the northern Virgin Islands of Saint Thomas and Saint John and inflicted severe damage to structures, roads, the airport on Saint Thomas, communications, and electricity. Less than two weeks later, Hurricane Maria passed over the island of Saint Croix in the southern Virgin Islands, inflicting considerable damage with heavy winds and flooding rains.

    Important location along the Anegada Passage - a key shipping lane for the Panama Canal; Saint Thomas has one of the best natural deepwater harbors in the Caribbean
Location: Caribbean, islands between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, east of Puerto Rico
Geographic coordinates: 18 20 N, 64 50 W
Area: total: 1,910 sq km
land: 346 sq km
water: 1,564 sq km

Size comparison: twice the size of Washington, DC
Land Boundaries: 0 km
Coastline: 188 km
Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climate: subtropical, tempered by easterly trade winds, relatively low humidity, little seasonal temperature variation; rainy season September to November
Terrain: mostly hilly to rugged and mountainous with little flat land
Natural resources: pleasant climate, beaches foster tourism
Land use: agricultural land: 11.5% (2011 est.) arable land: 2.9% (2011 est.)
permanent crops: 2.9% (2011 est.) permanent pasture: 5.7% (2011 est.) forest: 57.4% (2011 est.)
other: 31.1% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land: 1 sq km (2012)
Natural hazards: several hurricanes in recent years; frequent and severe droughts and floods; occasional earthquakes
Current Environment Issues: lack of natural freshwater resources; protection of coral reefs; solid waste management; coastal development; increased boating and overfishing
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Nationality: noun: Virgin Islander(s) (US citizens)
adjective: Virgin Islander
Ethnic groups: black 76%, white 15.6%, Asian 1.4%, other 4.9%, mixed 2.1% (2010 est.) note: 17.4% self-identify as latino
Languages: English 71.6%, Spanish or Spanish Creole 17.2%, French or French Creole 8.6%, other 2.5% (2010 est.)
Religions: Protestant 59% (Baptist 42%, Episcopalian 17%), Roman Catholic 34%, other 7%
Population: 106,977 (July 2018 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 20.26% (male 11,102 /female 10,570)
15-24 years: 10.87% (male 5,665 /female 5,965)
25-54 years: 36.87% (male 18,454 /female 20,987)
55-64 years: 13.92% (male 7,039 /female 7,851)
65 years and over: 18.08% (male 8,802 /female 10,542) (2018 est.)
Dependency ratios: total dependency ratio: 60.8 (2015 est.)
youth dependency ratio: 32.8 (2015 est.)
elderly dependency ratio: 28 (2015 est.)
potential support ratio: 3.6 (2015 est.)
Median age: total: 41.3 years
male: 40.1 years
female: 42.2 years (2018 est.)
Population growth rate: -0.3% (2018 est.)
Birth rate: 12.5 births/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Death rate: 8.1 deaths/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Net migration rate: -7.5 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Urbanization: urban population: 95.7% of total population (2018)
rate of urbanization: 0.1% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Major urban areas - population: 52,000 CHARLOTTE AMALIE (capital) (2018)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 0.95 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.88 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.9 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.83 male(s)/female
total population: 0.91 male(s)/female (2018 est.)
Infant mortality rate: total: 7.7 deaths/1,000 live births male: 8.8 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 6.7 deaths/1,000 live births (2018 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 79.5 years male: 76.3 years
female: 83 years (2018 est.)
Total fertility rate: 2.06 children born/woman (2018 est.)
Drinking water source: improved:
urban: 100% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 100% of population

urban: 0% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility access: improved:
urban: 96.4% of population (2015 est.)
rural: 96.4% of population (2015 est.)
total: 96.4% of population (2015 est.)

urban: 3.6% of population (2015 est.)
rural: 3.6% of population (2015 est.)
total: 3.6% of population (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: n/a
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: n/a
HIV/AIDS - deaths: n/a
Education expenditures: n/a
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Country name: conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Virgin Islands
former: Danish West Indies
abbreviation: VI
etymology: the myriad islets, cays, and rocks surrounding the major islands reminded Christopher COLUMBUS in 1493 of Saint Ursula and her 11,000 virgin followers (Santa Ursula y las Once Mil Virgenes), which over time shortened to the Virgins (las Virgenes)
Government type: presidential democracy; a self-governing territory of the US
Capital: name: Charlotte Amalie
geographic coordinates: 18 21 N, 64 56 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions: none (territory of the US); there are no first-order administrative divisions as defined by the US Government, but there are 3 islands at the second order; Saint Croix, Saint John, Saint Thomas
Independence: none (territory of the US)
National holiday: Transfer Day (from Denmark to the US), 31 March (1917)
Constitution: history: 22 July 1954 - the Revised Organic Act of the Virgin Islands functions as a constitution for this territory of the US amendments: revised 1962, 2000 (2018)
Legal system: US common law
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal; note - island residents are US citizens but do not vote in US presidential elections
Executive branch: chief of state: President Donald J. TRUMP (since 20 January 2017); Vice President Michael R. PENCE (since 20 January 2017)

head of government: Governor Albert BRYAN, Jr. (since 7 January 2019), Lieutenant Governor Tregenza ROACH (since 7 January 2019)

cabinet: Territorial Cabinet appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Senate elections/appointments: president and vice president indirectly elected on the same ballot by an Electoral College of 'electors' chosen from each state; president and vice president serve a 4-year term (eligible for a second term); under the US Constitution, residents of the Virgin Islands do not vote in elections for US president and vice president; however, they may vote in the Democratic and Republican presidential primary elections; governor and lieutenant governor directly elected on the same ballot by absolute majority vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 4-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 6 November 2018 with a runoff on 20 November 2018 (next to be held in November 2022)

election results: Albert BRYAN, Jr. elected governor in the second round; percent of vote in first round - Albert BRYAN, Jr. (Democratic Party) 38.1%, Kenneth MAPP (independent) 33.5%, Adlah "Foncie" DONASTORG, Jr. (independent) 16.5%, other 11.9%; percent of vote in second round- Albert BRYAN, Jr. (Democratic Party) 54.5%, Kenneth MAPP (independent) 45.2%, other .3%
Legislative branch: description: unicameral Legislature of the Virgin Islands (15 seats; senators directly elected in single- and multi-seat constituencies by simple majority popular vote to serve 2-year terms) the Virgin Islands directly elects 1 delegate to the US House of Representatives by simple majority vote to serve a 2-year term

elections: Legislature of the Virgin Islands last held on 6 November 2018 (next to be held in November 2020) US House of Representatives last held on 6 November 2018 (next to be held in November 2020)

election results: Legislature of the Virgin Islands - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - Democratic Party 13, independents 2; composition - men 11, women 4, percent of women 26.7% delegate to US House of Representatives - seat by party - Democratic Party 1; composition - 1 woman note: the Virgin Islands to the US House of Representatives can vote when serving on a committee and when the House meets as the Committee of the Whole House, but not when legislation is submitted for a “full floor” House vote
Judicial branch: highest courts: Supreme Court of the Virgin Islands (consists of the chief justice and 2 associate justices); note - court established by the US Congress in 2004 and assumed appellate jurisdiction in 2007 judge selection and term of office: justices appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Virgin Islands Senate; justices serve initial 10-year terms and upon reconfirmation, during the extent of good behavior; chief justice elected to position by peers for a 3-year term

subordinate courts: Superior Court (Territorial Court renamed in 2004); US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit (has appellate jurisdiction over the District Court of the Virgin Islands; it is a territorial court and is not associated with a US federal judicial district); District Court of the Virgin Islands
Political parties and leaders: Democratic Party [Donna M. CHRISTENSEN] Independent Citizens' Movement or ICM [Dale BLYDEN] Republican Party [John CANEGATA]
International organization participation: AOSIS (observer), Interpol (subbureau), IOC, UPU, WFTU (NGOs)
National anthem: name: Virgin Islands March
lyrics/music: multiple/Alton Augustus ADAMS, Sr.

note: adopted 1963; serves as a local anthem; as a territory of the US, "The Star-Spangled Banner" is official (see United States)
Diplomatic representation in the US: none (territory of the US)
Diplomatic representation from the US: none (territory of the US)
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Tourism, trade, other services, and rum production are the primary economic activities of the US Virgin Islands (USVI), accounting for most of its GDP and employment. The USVI receives between 2.5 and 3 million tourists a year, mostly from visiting cruise ships. The islands are vulnerable to damage from storms, as evidenced by the destruction from two major hurricanes in 2017. Recovery and rebuilding have continued, but full recovery from these back-to-back hurricanes is years away. The USVI government estimates it will need $7.5 billion, almost twice the territory’s GDP, to rebuild the territory. The agriculture sector is small and most food is imported. In 2016, government spending (both federal and territorial together) accounted for about 27% of GDP while exports of goods and services, including spending by tourists, accounted for nearly 47%. Federal programs and grants, including rum tax cover-over totaling $482.3 million in 2016, contributed 32.2% of the territory’s total revenues. The economy picked up 0.9% in 2016 and had appeared to be progressing before the 2017 hurricanes severely damaged the territory’s infrastructure and the economy.
GDP (purchasing power parity): $3.872 billion (2016 est.) $3.759 billion (2015 est.) $3.622 billion (2014 est.)

note: data are in 2013 dollars
GDP (official exchange rate): $5.182 billion (2016 est.) (2016 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: 0.9% (2016 est.) 0.3% (2015 est.) -1% (2014 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP): $37,000 (2016 est.) $35,800 (2015 est.) $34,500 (2014 est.) GDP - composition, by end use: household consumption: 68.2% (2016 est.) government consumption: 26.8% (2016 est.) investment in fixed capital: 7.5% (2016 est.) investment in inventories: 15% n/a (2016 est.) exports of goods and services: 46.7% (2016 est.) imports of goods and services: -64.3% (2016 est.) GDP - composition, by sector of origin: agriculture: 2% (2012 est.) industry: 20% (2012 est.) services: 78% (2012 est.)
Agriculture - products: fruit, vegetables, sorghum; Senepol cattle
Industries: tourism, watch assembly, rum distilling, construction, pharmaceuticals, electronics
Industrial production growth rate: n/a
Labor force: 48,550 (2016 est.)
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture: 1%
industry: 19%
services: 80% (2003 est.)
Unemployment rate: 10.4% (2017 est.) 11% (2016 est.)
Population below poverty line: 28.9% (2002 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: n/a
highest 10%: n/a
Budget: revenues: 1.496 billion (2016 est.)
expenditures: 1.518 billion (2016 est.)
Taxes and other revenues: 28.9% (of GDP) (2016 est.) Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-): -0.4% (of GDP) (2016 est.)
Public debt: 53.3% of GDP (2016 est.) 45.9% of GDP (2014 est.)
Fiscal year: 1 October - 30 September
Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1% (2016 est.) 2.6% (2015 est.)
Exports: $1.81 billion (2016 est.) $1.537 billion (2015 est.)
Exports - commodities: rum
Imports: $2.489 billion (2016 est.) $1.549 billion (2015 est.)
Imports - commodities: foodstuffs, consumer goods, building materials
Debt - external: n/a
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home: (31 December 2009 est.)
Exchange rates: the US dollar is used
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Electricity - production: 704 million kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - consumption: 654.7 million kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity: 325,000 kW (2016 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels: 98% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels: 0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants: 0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources: 2% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Crude oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2017 est.)
Crude oil - exports: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Crude oil - imports: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Crude oil - proved reserves: 0 bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption: 1,240 bbl/day (2016 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports: 3,285 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports: 23,480 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - consumption: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves: 0 cu m (1 January 2014 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy: 2.764 million Mt (2017 est.)
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Telephone system: general assessment: modern system with total digital switching, uses fiber-optic cable and microwave radio relay; good interisland and international connections; broadband access; expansion of FttP (Fiber to the Home) markets; LTE launches; regulatory development (2018)

domestic: full range of services available; fixed-line 73 per 100 persons (2018)

international: country code - 1-340; submarine cable connections to US, the Caribbean, Central and South America; satellite earth stations - NA
Broadcast media: about a dozen TV broadcast stations including 1 public TV station; multi-channel cable and satellite TV services are available; 24 radio stations
Internet country code: .vi
Internet users: total: 57,000
percent of population: 54.8% (July 2016 est.)
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Airports: 2 (2013)
Airports (paved runways): total 2
(2013) over 3,047 m: 1 (2013)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2013)
Roadways: total 1,260 km
Ports and terminals: major seaport(s): Charlotte Amalie, Christiansted, Cruz Bay, Frederiksted, Limetree Bay
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Defense is the responsibility of the US
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 Transnational Issues
Disputes - International: none
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