St Lucia

Reference work entry


  • Capital: Castries

  • Population estimate, 2015: 185,000

  • GNI per capita, 2014: (PPP$) 9,765

  • HDI/world rank, 2014: 0.729/89

  • Internet domain extension: .lc

Civil Aviation

There are two international airports: Hewanorra International (near Vieux-Fort) and George F. L. Charles (near Castries). In 2009 Hewanorra handled 513,959 passengers (483,632 in 2008) and George F. L. Charles—which handles inter-Caribbean flights—309,132 passengers (358,313 in 2008).


The climate is tropical, with a dry season from Jan. to April. Most rain falls in Nov.–Dec.; annual amount varies from 60″ (1,500 mm) to 138″ (3,450 mm). The average annual temperature is about 80 °F (26.7 °C).

Constitution and Government

The head of state is the British sovereign, represented by an appointed Governor-General. There is a 18-seat House of Assembly (17 members elected for 5 years plus the speaker) and an 11-seat Senate appointed by the Governor-General.


The East Caribbean dollar (XCD) (of 100 cents) is in use. US dollars are also normally accepted.


In 2010 agriculture contributed 3.5% of GDP, industry 16.6% and services 79.9%.


In the period April–June 2004 the labour force totalled 78,210. The unemployment rate was 21.0% in 2004.


There are no daily newspapers. In 2008 there were six paid-for non-daily newspapers: the thrice-weekly The Voice and The Star; and the weekly The Mirror, The Crusader, The Vanguard and One Caribbean.


According to estimates by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life, 91.1% of the population in 2010 was Christian and 6.0% had no religious affiliation. In Feb. 2016 there was one cardinal.


The island has about 1,200 km of roads, mainly unpaved.


There are two ports, Castries and Vieux Fort.

Social Statistics

2011: births, 2,009; deaths, 983. Rates, 2011 (per 1,000 population): births, 12.0; deaths, 5.9. Infant mortality, 2010 (per 1,000 live births), 14. Expectation of life in 2013 was 72.2 years for males and 77.5 for females. Annual population growth rate, 2005–10, 1.4%; fertility rate, 2008, 2.0 births per woman.


In March 2013 there were an estimated 77,000 mobile phone subscriptions and an estimated 19,200 main (fixed) telephone lines. In 2010, 56.5% of households had internet access.

Territory and Population

St Lucia is an island of the Lesser Antilles in the eastern Caribbean between Martinique and St Vincent, with an area of 617 km2 (238 sq. miles). Population (2010 census, provisional) 165,595; density, 268.4 per km2. In 2011 the population was 28.1% urban. The official language is English, but 80% of the population speak a French Creole. In 2010, 85% of the population was African/Black, 11% were of mixed race and 2% of East Indian ethnic origin. The capital is Castries (population, 1999, 57,000).


In 2010 there were 305,937 tourist arrivals by air, up from 278,491 in 2009. St Lucia received 670,043 cruise ship visitors in 2010 (when there were 380 cruise ship calls), down from 699,306 in 2009. There were 7,613 other same-day visitors in 2010.

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Limited 2019

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