Deposit insurance Saint Vincent

 

The Financial System in the ECCU
The financial system in the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) comprises domestic banks, International Financial Services Sector banks, credit unions, insurance companies, national development foundations, development finance institutions, building and loan associations and finance companies

 


 

 

Money In The Bank – How Much Of It Is insured?

St. Vincent is rapidly becoming a leading location for foreign investment. The volcanic islands between the Florida Keys and the South American Mainland is very well known for offshore business. Investors will benefit from the extensive range of investment opportunities and incentives available in St.Vincent and the Grenadines.
The business incentives are:
- Complete exemption from income tax on profits [some exception applies]
- An independent and efficient judiciary system
- Significant Tax holidays for new business
- Import tax reduction on raw materials, machinery, equipment and spare parts
- Freedom to repatriate funds for business.
- A low-cost operating centre for offshore business
- Exceptional low fee structure for business formation.
- Lifting of ban on foreigners holding trust company licences
- A stable foreign exchange regime
- Excellent Telecommunications with the entire world.
- Stable labour force
- A tradition of governmental support for foreign private investment
- Support for foreign private investment.

St.Vincent and the Grenadines boasts perhaps the most modern International Business Centre.

PROFILE

Geography
Area: 340 sq. km. (130 sq. mi.); slightly less than twice the size of Washington, DC. The Grenadines include 32 islands, the largest of which are Bequia, Mustique, Canouan, and Union. Some of the smaller islands are privately owned.
Cities: Capital--Kingstown.
Terrain: Volcanic and mountainous, with the highest peak, Soufriere, rising to 1,219 meters (4,000 ft.).
Climate: Tropical.

People
Nationality: Noun and adjective--Vincentian.
Population (July 2009 est.): 104,574.
Annual population growth rate (2009 est.): -0.344%.
Ethnic groups: African descent (66%), mixed (19%), West Indian (6%), Carib Indian (2%), other (7%).
Religions: Anglican (47%), Methodist (28%), Roman Catholic (13%), other Protestant denominations, Seventh-day Adventist, and Hindu.
Language: English (official); some French Patois spoken.
Education (2004): Adult literacy--88.1%.
Health (2006): Infant mortality rate--17/1,000. Life expectancy--men 69 years; women 74 years.
Workforce (2006): 57,695.
Unemployment (2004): 12%.

Government
Type: Parliamentary democracy; independent sovereign state within the Commonwealth.
Independence: October 27, 1979.
Constitution: October 27, 1979.
Branches: Executive--governor general (representing Queen Elizabeth II, head of state), prime minister (head of government), cabinet. Legislative--unicameral legislature with 15-member elected House of Assembly and six-member appointed Senate. Judicial--district courts, Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (High Court and Court of Appeals), final appeal to the Privy Council in London.
Subdivisions: Six parishes.
Political parties: Unity Labour Party (ULP, incumbent), New Democratic Party (NDP).
Suffrage: Universal at 18.

Economy
GDP (purchasing power parity, 2009 est.): $1.55 billion.
GDP real growth rate (2009 est.): -6.5%.
Per capita GDP (2009 est.): $18,100.
Inflation (consumer prices, 2007 est.): 6.1%.
Natural resources: Timber.
Agriculture: Mostly bananas.
Industry: Plastic products, food processing, cement, furniture, clothing, starch, and detergents.
Trade (2005): Exports--$40 million (merchandise) and $155 million (commercial services). Major markets--European Union (27.2%), Barbados (12.7%), Trinidad and Tobago (12.3%), Saint Lucia (10.9%), and the United States (9.2%). Imports--$240 million (merchandise) and $74 million (commercial services). Major suppliers--United States (33.3%), Trinidad and Tobago (23.6%), European Union (15.1%), Japan (4.2%), and Barbados (3.9%).
Official exchange rate: EC$2.70 = U.S. $1.

PEOPLE
Most Vincentians are the descendants of African slaves brought to the island to work on plantations. There also are a few white descendants of English colonists, as well as some East Indians, Carib Indians, and a sizable minority of mixed race. The country's official language is English, but a French patois may be heard on some of the Grenadine Islands.

HISTORY
Carib Indians aggressively prevented European settlement on St. Vincent until the 18th century. African slaves--whether shipwrecked or escaped from St. Lucia and Grenada and seeking refuge in St. Vincent--intermarried with the Caribs and became known as "black Caribs." Beginning in 1719, French settlers cultivated coffee, tobacco, indigo, cotton, and sugar on plantations worked by African slaves. In 1763, St. Vincent was ceded to Britain. Restored to French rule in 1779, St. Vincent was regained by the British under the Treaty of Versailles in 1783. Conflict between the British and the black Caribs continued until 1796, when General Abercrombie crushed a revolt fomented by the French radical Victor Hugues. More than 5,000 black Caribs were eventually deported to Roatan, an island off the coast of Honduras.

Slavery was abolished in 1834; the resulting labor shortages on the plantations attracted Portuguese immigrants in the 1840s and east Indians in the 1860s. Conditions remained harsh for both former slaves and immigrant agricultural workers, as depressed world sugar prices kept the economy stagnant until the turn of the century.

From 1763 until independence, St. Vincent passed through various stages of colonial status under the British. A representative assembly was authorized in 1776, Crown Colony government installed in 1877, a legislative council created in 1925, and universal adult suffrage granted in 1951.

During this period, the British made several unsuccessful attempts to affiliate St. Vincent with other Windward Islands in order to govern the region through a unified administration. The most notable was the West Indies Federation, which collapsed in 1962. St. Vincent was granted associate statehood status in 1969, giving it complete control over its internal affairs. Following a referendum in 1979, St. Vincent and the Grenadines became the last of the Windward Islands to gain independence.

Natural disasters have plagued the country throughout the 20th century. In 1902, the La Soufriere volcano erupted, killing 2,000 people. Much farmland was damaged, and the economy deteriorated. In April 1979, La Soufriere erupted again. Although no one was killed, thousands had to be evacuated, and there was extensive agricultural damage. In 1980 and 1987, hurricanes devastated banana and coconut plantations; 1998 and 1999 also saw very active hurricane seasons, with Hurricane Lenny in 1999 causing extensive damage to the west coast of the island.

GOVERNMENT
St. Vincent and the Grenadines is a parliamentary democracy within the Commonwealth of Nations. Queen Elizabeth II is head of state and is represented on the island by a governor general, an office with mostly ceremonial functions. Control of the government rests with the prime minister and the cabinet.

The parliament is a unicameral body, consisting of 15 elected members and six appointed senators. The governor general appoints senators, four on the advice of the prime minister and two on the advice of the leader of the opposition. The parliamentary term of office is 5 years, although the prime minister may call elections at any time.

As in other English-speaking Caribbean countries, the judiciary in St. Vincent is rooted in British common law. There are 11 courts in three magisterial districts. The Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court, comprising a High Court and a Court of Appeals, is known in St. Vincent as the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Supreme Court. The court of last resort is the judicial committee of Her Majesty's Privy Council in London.

There is no local government in St. Vincent, and all six parishes are administered by the central government.

Principal Government Officials
Head of State--Queen Elizabeth II
Governor General--Frederick Ballantyne
Prime Minister--Ralph E. Gonsalves
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Commerce, and Trade--Douglas Slater
Ambassador to the United States and the OAS--La Celia Prince
Permanent Representative to the UN--Camillo Gonsalves

St. Vincent and the Grenadines maintains an embassy at 3216 New Mexico Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20016 (tel. 202-364-6730). St. Vincent also has a consul resident in New York.

POLITICAL CONDITIONS
The People's Political Party (PPP), founded in 1952 by Ebenezer Joshua, was the first major political party in St. Vincent. The PPP had its roots in the labor movement and was in the forefront of national policy prior to independence, winning elections from 1957 through 1966. With the development of a more conservative black middle class, however, the party began to lose support steadily, until it collapsed after a rout in the 1979 elections. The party dissolved itself in 1984.

Founded in 1955, the St. Vincent Labour Party (SVLP), under R. Milton Cato, gained the support of the middle class. With a conservative law-and-order message and a pro-Western foreign policy, the SVLP dominated politics from the mid-1960s until the mid-1980s. Following victories in the 1967 and 1974 elections, the SVLP led the island to independence, winning the first post-independence election in 1979. Expecting an easy victory for the SVLP in 1984, Cato called early elections. The results were surprising: with a record 89% voter turnout, James F. Mitchell's New Democratic Party (NDP) won nine seats in the House of Assembly.

Bolstered by a resurgent economy in the mid-1980s, Mitchell led his party to an unprecedented sweep of all 15 House of Assembly seats in the 1989 elections. The opposition emerged from the election weakened and fragmented but was able to win three seats during the February 1994 elections under a "unity" coalition. In 1998, Prime Minister Mitchell and the NDP were returned to power for an unprecedented fourth term but with only a slim margin of 8 seats to 7 seats for the Unity Labour Party (ULP). The NDP was able to accomplish a return to power while receiving a lesser share of the popular vote, approximately 45% to the ULP's 55%.

In March 2001, the ULP, led by Ralph Gonsalves, assumed power after winning 12 of the 15 seats in Parliament. In the December 2005 parliamentary elections, Prime Minister Gonsalves and the ULP retained their 12-3 majority over the NDP. In the December 2010 parliamentary elections, Prime Minister Gonsalves and the ULP retained a slight majority, winning 8 of the 15 seats. The main opposition party, the NDP, won the remaining 7 seats.

ECONOMY
Banana production employs upwards of 60% of the work force and accounts for 50% of merchandise exports in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, with an emphasis on the main island of St. Vincent. Such reliance on one crop has made the economy vulnerable to fluctuations in banana prices and reduced European Union trade preferences. To combat these vulnerabilities, the Government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines is focused on diversifying its economy away from reliance on bananas. Recently, there has been a parallel reduction in licit agriculture and a rise in marijuana cultivation, making St. Vincent and the Grenadines the largest marijuana producer in the Eastern Caribbean.

In contrast to developments on the main island, tourism in the Grenadines has grown to become a very important part of the economy, and the chief earner of foreign exchange for the country as a whole. The Grenadines have become a favorite of high-end tourism and the focus of new development in the country. Super-luxury resorts, yachting tourism, and a commitment by the government to rehabilitate and protect the Tobago Keys as a national park have all contributed to strong tourism returns in the Grenadines.

St. Vincent and the Grenadines' currency is the Eastern Caribbean Dollar (EC$), a regional currency shared among members of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU). The Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) issues the EC$, manages monetary policy, and regulates and supervises commercial banking activities in its member countries. The ECCB has kept the EC$ pegged at EC$2.7=U.S. $1.

St. Vincent and the Grenadines is a beneficiary of the U.S. Caribbean Basin Initiative that grants duty-free entry into the United States for many goods. St. Vincent and the Grenadines also belongs to the predominantly English-speaking Caribbean Community and Common Market (CARICOM) and the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME).

FOREIGN RELATIONS
St. Vincent and the Grenadines maintains close ties to the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom, and is a member of regional political and economic organizations such as the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) and CARICOM. St. Vincent and the Grenadines is also a member of the United Nations, the Commonwealth of Nations, the Organization of American States (OAS), and the Association of Caribbean States (ACS). St. Vincent and the Grenadines has chosen to recognize Taiwan instead of the People's Republic of China.

U.S.-ST. VINCENT RELATIONS
The United States and St. Vincent have solid bilateral relations. Both governments are concerned with eradicating local marijuana cultivation and combating the transshipment of narcotics. In 1995, the United States and St. Vincent signed a Maritime Law Enforcement Agreement. In 1996, the Government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines signed an Extradition Treaty with the United States. In 1997, the two countries signed a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty.

The United States supports the Government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines' efforts to expand its economic base and to provide a higher standard of living for its citizens. U.S. assistance is channeled primarily through multilateral agencies such as the World Bank. The United States has 27 Peace Corps volunteers in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, working in business development, education, and health. The U.S. military also provides assistance through construction and humanitarian civic action projects.

A relatively small number of Americans--fewer than 1,000--reside on the islands.

The United States maintains no official presence in St. Vincent. The Ambassador and Embassy officers are resident in Barbados and frequently travel to St. Vincent.

Principal U.S. Embassy Officials
Ambassador--vacant
Deputy Chief of Mission--D. Brent Hardt
Political/Economic Chief--Brian Greaney
Consul General--Eugene Sweeney
Commercial Affairs--Greg Floyd
Public Affairs Officer--Rebecca Ross
Peace Corps Director--Kevin Carley (resident in St. Lucia)

The U.S. Embassy in Barbados is located in the Wildey Business Park, Wildey, St. Michael (tel: 246-436-4950; fax: 246-429-5246).

TRAVEL AND BUSINESS INFORMATION
The U.S. Department of State's Consular Information Program advises Americans traveling and residing abroad through Country Specific Information, Travel Alerts, and Travel Warnings. Country Specific Information exists for all countries and includes information on entry and exit requirements, currency regulations, health conditions, safety and security, crime, political disturbances, and the addresses of the U.S. embassies and consulates abroad. Travel Alerts are issued to disseminate information quickly about terrorist threats and other relatively short-term conditions overseas that pose significant risks to the security of American travelers. Travel Warnings are issued when the State Department recommends that Americans avoid travel to a certain country because the situation is dangerous or unstable.

For the latest security information, Americans living and traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet web site at http://www.travel.state.gov, where the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Alerts, and Travel Warnings can be found. Consular Affairs Publications, which contain information on obtaining passports and planning a safe trip abroad, are also available at http://www.travel.state.gov. For additional information on international travel, see http://www.usa.gov/Citizen/Topics/Travel/International.shtml.

The Department of State encourages all U.S. citizens traveling or residing abroad to register via the State Department's travel registration website or at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate abroad. Registration will make your presence and whereabouts known in case it is necessary to contact you in an emergency and will enable you to receive up-to-date information on security conditions.

Emergency information concerning Americans traveling abroad may be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the U.S. and Canada or the regular toll line 1-202-501-4444 for callers outside the U.S. and Canada.

The National Passport Information Center (NPIC) is the U.S. Department of State's single, centralized public contact center for U.S. passport information. Telephone: 1-877-4-USA-PPT (1-877-487-2778); TDD/TTY: 1-888-874-7793. Passport information is available 24 hours, 7 days a week. You may speak with a representative Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., Eastern Time, excluding federal holidays.

Travelers can check the latest health information with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia. A hotline at 800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636) and a web site at http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/default.aspx give the most recent health advisories, immunization recommendations or requirements, and advice on food and drinking water safety for regions and countries. The CDC publication "Health Information for International Travel" can be found at http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/contentYellowBook.aspx.

Further Electronic Information
Department of State Web Site. Available on the Internet at http://www.state.gov, the Department of State web site provides timely, global access to official U.S. foreign policy information, including Background Notes and daily press briefings along with the directory of key officers of Foreign Service posts and more. The Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) provides security information and regional news that impact U.S. companies working abroad through its website http://www.osac.gov

Export.gov provides a portal to all export-related assistance and market information offered by the federal government and provides trade leads, free export counseling, help with the export process, and more.

source: http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2345.htm

 

 

 

 

Member Territories of ECCB
ST VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES

Amerindian Name: Hairoun
Meaning: Home of the Blessed

AREA
150 sq miles = 386 sq km

CAPITAL
Kingstown

POPULATION
109,2022

LOCATION
60 56' west longitude and 13 15' north latitude, situated 100 miles west of Barbados and part of the Windward Island grouping.

AIRPORTS
E.T Joshua Airport on the mainland, J F Mitchell Airport in Bequia, Union Island Airport, Canouan Airport, and Mustique Airstrip.

GOVERNMENT
St Vincent and the Grenadines is an independent State within the British Commonwealth. Legislative power is vested in an unicameral elected Parliament comprising a House of Assembly with 15 elected representatives and 6 appointed Senators. The Head of State is a Governor General appointed by Her Majesty the Queen.

CURRENCY
The Eastern Caribbean Dollar is legal tender and maintains an exchange rate of EC$2.70 = US$1.00

COMMERCIAL BANKS
Bank of Nova Scotia
FirstCaribbean International Bank (Barbados) Ltd
National Commercial Bank (SVG) Ltd
RBTT Bank Caribbean Ltd


NATIONAL HOLIDAYS
New Year's Day
National Heroes Day
Good Friday
Easter Monday
Labour Day
Whit Monday
Carnival Monday
Carnival Tuesday
Emancipation Day
Independence Day - October 27
Christmas Day
Boxing Day

IMPORTANT EVENTS
Blues Festival - January
Guinness St Vincent and the Grenadines Marathon under 20 BMX 14 mile race – February
Union Island Big Drum Festival – February
Bequia Regatta – March/April
Union Island Easterval – March/April
National Fishing Competition – May
Carnival Week – July
Canouan Regatta - August
National Drama Festival – October
Independence Celebrations – October
School Drama Festival – November
National Exhibition - December
"Nine Mornings" and Christmas Celebrations - December.

NATIONAL FLOWER
The national flower of St Vincent and the Grenadines is the Soufriere Tree - Spachea Perforata.

NATIONAL BIRD
The St Vincent and the Grenadines' national bird is the St Vincent Parrot (Amazona Guildingii).

MAIN ECONOMIC ACTIVITIES
Economic activity in St Vincent is centred on agricultural production and exports, with tourism and light manufacturing playing a lesser role. Banana is the dominant agricultural crop. Private investment is encouraged through generous fiscal incentive packages offered to developers.

HISTORICAL AND GEROGRAPHICAL DATA
Claims that St Vincent and the Grenadines was sighted by Columbus in 1492 have been disputed as there is no evidence that he ever landed on the island. The island received its name in 1498. The first settlers, the Arawaks, were partly displaced by the Caribs, who strongly resisted European settlement until the remaining yellow Caribs, fearing total extinction, encouraged and assisted the French to establish a settlement in 1719. The island changed hands between France and Britain several times thereafter, until 1783 when it was ceded to Britain under the Treaty of Versailles. In 1969 St Vincent and the Grenadines became an internally self-governing State. Independence followed on October 27, 1979.

St Vincent and the Grenadines comprises 32 islands and cays located 60 56' west longitude and 13 15' north longitude. The chain of islands is situated 100 miles west of Barbados, 75 miles north of Grenada, and 21 miles south of St Lucia. Only eight (8) of the 32 islands are inhabited, with St Vincent, the mainland, being the largest, measuring a total of 133 square miles and possessing an area of 85,120 acres. The remaining seven islands comprising the Grenadines are located to the south of St Vincent.

Island Miles from St Vincent Area Acres Sq Miles
Bequia 9 4,420 7
Mustique 17 1,290 2
Canouan 29 1,832 3
Mayreau 35 640 1
Union Island 36 2,070 3.2
Prune (Palm) 41 110 0.2
Petit St Vincent 44 113 0.2

AGENCY OFFICE
The Eastern Caribbean Central Bank's Agency Office commenced operations on April 6, 1990.

Guide to open an account in Saint Vincent with LoyalBank
 

 


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