According to ehistorylib, in 2005, Jamaica had a population of around 2.7 million people and a GDP of $8 billion. The economy was largely based on tourism, with the main exports being bauxite and alumina. Unemployment rates were high at around 14%, while poverty levels remained quite high with an estimated 25% of the population living below the poverty line.
Foreign relations in 2005 were generally positive with Jamaica being a member of various international organizations such as the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the United Nations (UN). In addition, it maintained diplomatic ties with many countries in North America, Europe, Africa and Asia.
Politically, Jamaica was a constitutional monarchy during this time period with executive power vested in both the Prime Minister who was elected by Parliament every five years and the Governor-General who represented Queen Elizabeth II as Head of State. The Prime Minister had authority over foreign policy decisions and could veto any legislation passed by Parliament. Furthermore, there were three branches of government: Executive (Prime Minister), Legislative (Parliament) and Judicial (Supreme Court). These branches worked together to ensure that laws were properly enforced throughout the country.
Jamaica. According to countryaah, Kingston is the capital and one of the major cities within the country of Jamaica. The right-wing opposition party Jamaica’s Workers Party (JLP) in February elected Bruce Golding as new leader since Edward Seaga opted to step down. Golding was a member of the JLP between 1970 and 1995, when he resigned to found a new party. Prior to the 2002 parliamentary elections, he returned to the JLP.
- Also see abbreviationfinder.org for how the acronym JA stands for the country of Jamaica and other meanings of this two-letter abbreviation.
The CARICOM countries, which include Jamaica, installed in the spring Court of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) to resolve disputes between Member States of the Caribbean Cooperation Organization and possibly replace the British Privy Council as the highest court in the countries. The dissatisfaction with the Privy Council has been great in Jamaica, since the Council stopped the execution of the death sentences. A majority of Jamaicans advocate the death penalty as a way to cope with the high crime rate.
In September, JLP organized demonstrations in protest of increased electricity, transport and food prices. Many schools and shops were closed during the demonstrations. Jamaica imports large quantities of oil, whose high price, according to the government, was the reason for the price increases. During the year, Jamaica signed an agreement with oil-rich Venezuela on bargain prices at a favorable price.
The island of Jamaica is made up of a core of volcanic rocks, with large areas of limestone forming much of the lowland belt. In Surrey, schists, conglomerates and recent volcanic rocks abound. In St. Catherine and Clarendon, in Middlesex, limestone beds also appear, covered in the south by an alluvial blanket; in Clarendon there is the largest plain of the whole island. At the center of Middlesex are porphyritic, granite and conglomerate rocks. Wetlands abound in the South Cornwall district, while the county center has numerous volcanic streams and dikes, which characterize the “Black Ground” near the Middlesex border. The mountains of the island reach considerable heights, especially in the east, where they culminate in Blue Mountain Peak (2240 meters) and branch out into elevated buttresses to the north and south. The north coast is poorly carved and the water is deep near the shore; the proximity of the mountains leaves just enough room for a very narrow coastal selvedge. Along the south coast, however, the depths are small, and so are in Old Harbor Bay, between the Portland Ridge and the Healthshire Hills, whose large entrance is blocked by small emerging rocks. The port of Kingston has a very unique shape: from the long chain of mountains to the east starts a narrow fortified spit of land – the so-called Palisadoes – which measures more than 11 km. long, with two terminal appendages, one to the east, the other to the west. The tongue of land widens in the center, and then it reduces again to end up in a long finger-shaped promontory, about 180 m wide. At its end is the ancient city of Port Royal, the headquarters of the old freebooters. The city was once very prosperous, before a violent earthquake destroyed it in 1692. A narrow but safe natural passage, the Ship Canal, makes the port communicate with the open sea.
Jamaica has, as mentioned, numerous mineral springs, some even of therapeutic value. There are many short and fast rivers, which radiate from the central mountainous region; none are usable for navigation, but the high waterfalls, rapids and underground trunks make the upper valleys extremely interesting and picturesque. Perhaps in the future these courses can be exploited to draw driving force for the benefit of industry, replacing the coal which is absolutely lacking on the island.
Jamaica’s climate varies little from one location to another, except in areas where the effects of high mountains are felt. Temperatures are naturally tropical and are around 26 ° along the coast, with seasonal variations from 8 to 11 °; in the mountains the average temperatures are lower and the changes greater. The rains are abundant everywhere, especially in May and August. Since the winds come mainly from ENE., The north-eastern part of the island is rainier, with annual rainfall even higher than 2500 mm., While on the southern coast the average is only 1200 mm. High temperatures and abundant rains favor lush tropical vegetation across the island.
In Jamaica the fauna is very poor in mammals. We note, as indeed in Cuba and Haiti, the total absence of monkeys, carnivores, ungulates, toothless and marsupials, which are so widespread in the warm and warm temperate regions of the Americas, but there are also no curious insectivores called solenodonts which constitute one of the most characteristic elements of the Antillean fauna. There are numerous gnawing on the island: in addition to various species of mice, the interesting Octodontidae can be noted, represented by a couple of particular species of the genus Capromys, exclusive to the Antilles and the Bahamas. The coasts are frequented by marine mammals, such as seals and mermaids.
Not even the avifauna offers richness and variety. Noteworthy is a bird, the green todi (Todus viridis) belonging to a small family exclusive to the Greater Antilles. Another very characteristic element is a passerine, the Platypsaris niger, the only representative in the Antilles of the Cotingidae families. On the contrary, many species of birds present in Cuba and Haiti are missing in Jamaica. There is relative abundance of reptiles: rattlesnakes and boa snakes are not lacking, nor crocodiles. Molluscs and insects with particular shapes are well represented.