Saint Vincent and the Grenadines: Country and Foreign Investment
Population, Language and Culture
Saint Vincent was first settled around 5000 BC by the peace-loving Ciboney, then by the Arawaks and the war-like Caribs.
A Dutch slave ship, wrecked off Bequia in 1675, brought the first Africans who inter-married to create the Black Caribs whose descendants live on the island today. Fought over for nearly a century by the French and British, sovereignty was settled on the British in 1783.
Independence was granted on 27 October 1979, and today Saint Vincent and The Grenadines is an independent democracy and part of the British Commonwealth.
The population was estimated at just under 103,537 for 2012; it is divided as follows: black 66%, mixed 19%, East Indian 6%, Carib Amerindian 2%, other 7%. The religion is primarily Protestant.
The official language of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is English, and it is the language for doing business. However, French and Spanish are widely taught on the Island and there are many bi-lingual inhabitants.
An interesting blend of African, Indian, Asian and European influences are expressed in the lifestyle of the people. The annual carnival ('Vincy Mas') is a showcase for the best in calypso singing, steelpan orchestras, soca music and masquerade costumes.