In November 2010, Gov. Fortuño proposed a tax reform plan that would be implemented in a six-year period, retroactive to January 1, 2010. The first phase, applicable to year 2010, reduces taxes to all individual taxpayers by 7–15%. By year 2016, average relief for individual taxpayers will represent a 50% tax cut and a 30% cut for corporate taxpayers, whose tax rate will be lowered from 41 to 30%Sony VAIO PCG-7185L battery.
Businesses and consumers in Puerto Rico are subjected to economic discrimination by many U.S. and multinational companies that limit access to products or offer them at higher prices to businesses and consumers located in Puerto Rico. For example, Apple does not include K-12 or post-secondary educational institutions in their national pricing program offering discounts to teachers and students and special pricing for institutional purchases. Sony VAIO PCG-7184L battery Likewise, Minneapolis-based Best Buy does not allow residents of Puerto Rico to purchase goods on their website, which may be purchased from the 50 states, Guam and the United States Virgin Islands, but invites potential customers to skirt their own rules: "Now you can order items online and ship them to a U.S. address* Sony VAIO PCG-7183L battery– or pick them up at a U.S. store. International orders may be shipped to street addresses in the U.S., U.S. Virgin Islands and Guam, along with AFO/FPO mailing address."
At the same time, the latest report by the President Task Force on Puerto Rico Status recognizes that the status question and the economy are intimately linked. Many participants in the forums conducted by the Task Force argued that uncertainty about status is holding Puerto Rico back in economic areasSony VAIO PCG-7182L battery. And although there are a number of economic actions that should be taken immediately or in the short term, regardless of the ultimate outcome of the status question, identifying the most effective means of assisting the Puerto Rican economy depends on resolving the ultimate question of status. In short, the long-term economic well-being of Puerto Rico would be dramatically improved by an early decision on the status questionSony VAIO PCG-7181L battery.
The population of Puerto Rico has been shaped by Amerindian settlement, European colonization, slavery, economic migration, and Puerto Rico's status as unincorporated territory of the United States.
Population and racial makeup
The United States Census Bureau estimates that the population of Puerto Rico was 3,706,690 on July 1, 2011, a 0.51% decrease since the 2010 United States CensusSony VAIO PCG-7174L battery.
Continuous European immigration during the 19th century helped the population grow from 155,000 in 1800 to almost a million at the close of the century. A census conducted by royal decree on September 30, 1858 gives the following totals of the Puerto Rican population at this time: 341,015 as Free colored; 300,430 identified as Whites; and 41,736 were slaves. Sony VAIO PCG-7173L battery
During the 19th century hundreds of Corsican, French, Lebanese, Chinese, and Portuguese families arrived in Puerto Rico, along with large numbers of immigrants from Spain (mainly from Catalonia, Asturias, Galicia, the Balearic Islands, Andalusia, and the Canary Islands) and numerous Spanish loyalists from Spain's former colonies in South AmericaSony VAIO PCG-7172L battery. Other settlers included Irish, Scots, Germans, Italians and thousands others who were granted land by Spain during the Real Cedula de Gracias de 1815 ("Royal Decree of Graces of 1815"), which allowed European Catholics to settle in the island with land allotments in the interior of the island, provided they agreed to pay taxes and continue to support the Catholic ChurchSony VAIO PCG-7171L battery.
Between 1960 and 1990 the census questionnaire in Puerto Rico did not ask about race or color. However, the 2000 United States Census included a racial self-identification question in Puerto Rico. According to the census, most Puerto Ricans self-identified as White and few declared themselves to be Black or some other race. A recent study conducted in Puerto Rico suggests that around 52.6% of the population possess Amerindian mtDNA. Sony VAIO PCG-7162L battery
Immigration and emigration
Population density, Census 2000
Puerto Rico has recently become the permanent home of over 100,000 legal residents who immigrated from not only the Dominican Republic, but from other Latin American countries. These include Cuba, Colombia, and Venezuela, as well as surrounding Caribbean islands, Haiti, Barbados, and the U.S. Virgin Islands among themSony VAIO PCG-7161L battery.
Emigration is a major part of contemporary Puerto Rican history. Starting soon after World War II, poverty, cheap airfare, and promotion by the island government caused waves of Puerto Ricans to move to the United States, particularly to New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Florida. This trend continued even as Puerto Rico's economy improved and its birth rate declined, and Puerto Ricans continue to follow a pattern of "circular migration"Sony VAIO PCG-7154L battery.
The most populous city is the capital, San Juan, with approximately 395,326 people. Other major cities include Bayamón, Carolina, Ponce, and Caguas. Of the ten most populous cities on the island, eight are located within what is considered San Juan's metropolitan area, while the other two are located in the south (Ponce) and west (Mayagüez) of the islandSony VAIO PCG-7153L battery.
The official languages are Spanish and English with Spanish being the primary language. English is taught as a second language in public and private schools from elementary levels to high school and at the university level.
Main article: Puerto Rican Spanish
The Spanish of Puerto Rico has evolved into having many idiosyncrasies in vocabulary and syntax that differentiate it from the Spanish spoken elsewhereSony VAIO PCG-7152L battery. While the Spanish spoken in all Iberian, Mediterranean and Atlantic Spanish Maritime Provinces was brought to the island over the centuries, the most profound regional impact on the Spanish spoken in Puerto Rico has been from that spoken in present-day Canary Islands.
As a result of the natural inclusion of indigenous vocabulary in all New World former European colonies (English, French, Spanish, Dutch, etc.) Sony VAIO PCG-7151L battery, the Spanish of Puerto Rico also includes occasional Taíno words, typically in the context of vegetation, natural phenomenon or primitive musical instruments. Similarly, African-attributed words exist in the contexts of foods, music or dances, developed in coastal towns with concentrations of descendants of former Sub-Saharan slavesSony VAIO PCG-7148L battery.
Main article: English in Puerto Rico
According to a study by the University of Puerto Rico, nine of every ten Puerto Ricans residing in Puerto Rico do not speak English at an advanced level. More recently, according to the 2005–2009 Population and Housing Narrative Profile for Puerto Rico, among people at least five years old living in Puerto Rico in 2005–2009, 95 percent spoke a language other than English at homeSony VPCW21M2E/WI battery. Of those speaking a language other than English at home, 100 percent spoke Spanish and less than 0.5 percent spoke some other language; 85 percent reported that they did not speak English "very well."
Front entrance of the Roman Catholic Cathedral of San Juan Bautista: Many religious beliefs now are represented in the islandSony VPCW21C7E battery
The Roman Catholic Church has historically been the dominant religion in Puerto Rico. The first dioceses in the Americas, including the first diocese of Puerto Rico, were authorized by Pope Julius II in 1511. One Pope, John Paul II, visited Puerto Rico in October 1984. All municipalities in Puerto Rico have at least one Catholic church, most of which are located at the town center or "plaza"Sony VPCW12S1E/WZ battery.
Protestantism, which was suppressed under the Spanish regime, has spread under American rule, making modern Puerto Rico interconfessional. The first Protestant church, Holy Trinity Church in Ponce, was established by the Anglican diocese of Antigua in 1872. In 1872, German settlers in Ponce founded the Iglesia Santísima Trinidad, an Anglican Church, the first non-Roman Catholic Church in the entire Spanish Empire in the AmericasSony VPCW12S1E/W battery.
There is also an Eastern Orthodox community in Puerto Rico, The Dormition of the Most Holy Theotokos/ St. Spyridon's Church is located in Trujillo Alto, and serves the small Orthodox community. The congregation represents Greeks, Russians, Serbians, Bulgarians, Americans, Moldavians, and Puerto Ricans. Sony VPCW12S1E/T battery
In 1940, Juanita Garcia Peraza founded the Mita Congregation, the first religion of Puerto Rican origin. Taíno religious practices have been rediscovered/reinvented to a degree by a handful of advocates. Various African religious practices have been present since the arrival of African slaves. In particular, the Yoruba beliefs of Santería and/or IfáSony VPCW12S1E/P battery, and the Kongo-derived Palo Mayombe find adherence among a few individuals who practice some form of African traditional religion.
In 1952, a handful of American Jews established the island's first synagogue in the former residence of William Korber, a wealthy Puerto Rican of German descent, which was designed and built by Czech architect Antonin Nechodoma. The synagogue, called Sha'are ZedeckSony VPCW11S1E/W battery, hired its first rabbi in 1954. Puerto Rico now is home to the largest Jewish community in the Caribbean, numbering 3,000, and is the only Caribbean island in which the Conservative, Reform and Orthodox Jewish movements all are represented.
In 2007, there were about 5,000 Muslims in Puerto Rico, representing about 0.13% of the population There were eight mosques spread throughout the island, with most Muslims living in Rio PiedrasSony VPCW11S1E/T battery.
In 2011, there were 26,546 Jehovah's Witnesses, representing about 0.72% of the population, with 329 congregations.
The Padmasambhava Buddhist Center, whose followers practice Tibetan Buddhism, has a branch in Puerto Rico.
Modern Puerto Rican culture is a unique mix of cultural antecedents, including African, Taíno (Amerindians), Spanish, and more recently, North AmericanSony VPCW11S1E/P battery.
From the Spanish Puerto Rico received the Spanish language, the Catholic religion and the vast majority of their cultural and moral values and traditions. The United States added English language influence, the university system and the adoption of some holidays and practices. On March 12 1903, the University of Puerto Rico was officially founded, branching out from the "Escuela Normal Industrial", a smaller organism that was founded in Fajardo three years beforeSony VPCYA1S1E/B battery.
Kapok tree (Ceiba), the national tree of Puerto Rico
Much of Puerto Rican culture centers on the influence of music. Like the country as a whole, Puerto Rican music has been developed by mixing other cultures with local and traditional rhythms. Early in the history of Puerto Rican music, the influences of African and Spanish traditions were most noticeable. However, the cultural movements across the Caribbean and North America have played a vital role in the more recent musical influences that have reached Puerto RicoSony VPCYA1V9E/B battery.
The official symbols of Puerto Rico are the Reinita mora or Puerto Rican Spindalis (a type of bird), the Flor de Maga (a type of flower), and the Ceiba or Kapok (a type of tree). The unofficial animal and a symbol of Puerto Rican pride is the Coquí, a small frog. Other popular symbols of Puerto Rico are the "jíbaro", the "countryman", and the cariteSony VPCY21S1E/SI battery.
Baseball was one of the first sports to gain widespread popularity in Puerto Rico. The Puerto Rico Baseball League serves as the only active professional league, operating as a winter league. No Major League Baseball franchise or affiliate plays in Puerto Rico, however, San Juan hosted the Montreal Expos for several series in 2003 and 2004 before they moved to WashingtonSony VPCY21S1E/L battery, D.C. and became the Washington Nationals. The Puerto Rico national baseball team has participated in the World Cup of Baseball winning one gold (1951), four silver and four bronze medals and the Caribbean Series, winning fourteen times. Famous Puerto Rican baseball players include Roberto Clemente and Orlando Cepeda and Roberto Alomar, enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1973, 1999, and 2011 respectively. Sony VPCY21S1E/G battery
Boxing, basketball, and volleyball are considered popular sports as well. Wilfredo Gómez and McWilliams Arroyo have won their respective divisions at the World Amateur Boxing Championships. Other medalists include José Pedraza, who holds a silver medal, as well as three boxers that finished in third place, José Luis Vellón, Nelson Dieppa and McJoe ArroyoSony VPCY11S1E/S battery. In the professional circuit, Puerto Rico has the third-most boxing world champions and its the global leader in champions per capita. These include Miguel Cotto, Félix Trinidad, Wilfred Benítez and Gómez among others. The Puerto Rico national basketball team joined the International Basketball Federation in 1957. Since then, it has won more than 30 medals in international competitionsSony VPCY11S1E battery, including gold in three FIBA Americas Championships and the 1994 Goodwill Games. August 8, 2004, became a landmark date for the team when it became the first team to defeat the United States in an Olympic tournament since the integration of National Basketball Association players. Winning the inaugural game with scores of 92–73 as part of the 2004 Summer Olympics organized in AthensSony VPCZ11X9E/B battery, Greece. Baloncesto Superior Nacional acts as the top-level professional basketball league in Puerto Rico, and has experienced success since its beginning in 1930.
Puerto Rico Islanders fans at game
Miscellaneous practices of this sport have experienced some success, including the "Puerto Rico All Stars" team, which has won twelve world championships in unicycle basketball. Organized Streetball has gathered some exposition, with teams like "Puerto Rico Street Ball" competing against establishedSony VPCZ11Z9E/B battery organizations including the Capitanes de Arecibo and AND1's Mixtape Tour Team. Six years after the first visit, AND1 returned as part of their renamed Live Tour, losing to the Puerto Rico Streetballers. Consequently, practitioners of this style have earned participation in international teams, including Orlando "El Gato" Meléndez, who became the first Puerto Rican born athlete to play for the Harlem Globetrotters. Sony VPCZ21M9E battery Orlando Antigua, whose mother is Puerto Rican, made history in 1995, when he became the first Hispanic and the first non-black in 52 years to play for the Harlem Globetrotters.
The Puerto Rico Islanders Football Club, founded in 2003, plays in the United Soccer Leagues First Division, which constitutes the second tier of football in North America. Puerto Rico is also a member of FIFA and CONCACAF. In 2008 the archipelago's first unified leagueSony VPCZ21Q9E battery, the Puerto Rico Soccer League, was established. Secondary sports include Professional wrestling and road running. The World Wrestling Council and International Wrestling Association are the largest wrestling promotions in the main island. The World's Best 10K, held annually in San Juan, has been ranked among the 20 most competitive races globallySony VPCZ21V9E battery.
Puerto Rico has representation in all international competitions including the Summer and Winter Olympics, the Pan American Games, the Caribbean World Series, and the Central American and Caribbean Games. Puerto Rican athletes have won six medals (one silver, five bronze) in Olympic competition, the first one in 1948 by boxer Juan Evangelista VenegasSony VPCEH3T9E battery. On March 2006 San Juan's Hiram Bithorn Stadium hosted the opening round as well as the second round of the newly formed World Baseball Classic. The Central American and Caribbean Games were held in 1993 in Ponce and in 2010 in Mayagüez.
The first school in Puerto Rico and the first school in the United States after Puerto Rico became a US territory, was the Escuela de Gramatica (Grammer School) Sony VPCEH3N6E battery. The school was established by Bishop Alonso Manso in 1513, in the area where the Cathedral of San Juan was to be constructed. The school was free of charge and the courses taught were Latin language, literature, history, science, art, philosophy and theology.
Education in Puerto Rico is divided in three levels—Primary (elementary school grades 1–6), Secondary (intermediate and high school grades 7–12) Sony VPCEH3N1E battery, and Higher Level (undergraduate and graduate studies). As of 2002, the literacy rate of the Puerto Rican population was 94.1%; by gender, it was 93.9% for males and 94.4% for females. According to the 2000 Census, 60.0% of the population attained a high school degree or higher level of education, and 18.3% has a bachelor's degree or higherSony VPCEH3D0E battery.
Instruction at the primary school level is compulsory between the ages of 5 and 18 and is enforced by the state. The Constitution of Puerto Rico grants the right to an education to every citizen on the island. To this end, public schools in Puerto Rico provide free and non-sectarian education at the elementary and secondary levels. At any of the three levels, students may attend either public or private schools. As of 1999, there were 1532 public schoolsSony VPCEH3B1E battery and 569 private schools in the island.
The largest and oldest university system in Puerto Rico is the public University of Puerto Rico (UPR) with 11 campuses. The largest private university systems on the island are the Sistema Universitario Ana G. Mendez which operates the Universidad del Turabo, Metropolitan University and Universidad del EsteSony VPCEH2Z1E battery, the multi-campus Inter American University, the Pontifical Catholic University, and the Universidad del Sagrado Corazón. Puerto Rico has four schools of Medicine and four Law Schools.
Tren Urbano at Bayamón Station
Main article: Transportation in Puerto Rico
Cities and towns in Puerto Rico are interconnected by a system of roads, freeways, expressways, and highways maintained by the Highways and Transportation Authority under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of Transportation, and patrolled by the Puerto Rico Police DepartmentSony VPCEH2S9E battery. The island's metropolitan area is served by a public bus transit system and a metro system called Tren Urbano (in English: Urban Train). Other forms of public transportation include seaborne ferries (that serve Puerto Rico's archipelago) as well as Carros Públicos (private mini buses).
The island has three international airports, the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in Carolina, Mercedita Airport in Ponce, and the Rafael Hernández Airport in AguadillaSony VPCEH2Q1E battery, and 27 local airports. The Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport is the largest aerial transportation hub in the Caribbean, and one of the largest in the world in terms of passenger and cargo movement.
Puerto Rico has 9 ports in different cities across the main island. The San Juan Port is the largest in Puerto Rico, and the busiest port in the Caribbean and the 10th busiest in the United States in terms of commercial activity and cargo movement, respectively. Sony VPCEH2P0E battery The second largest port is the Port of the Americas in Ponce, currently under expansion to increase cargo capacity to 1.5 million twenty-foot containers (TEUs) per year.
Trinidad and Tobago officially the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago is an archipelagic state in the southern Caribbean, lying just off the coast of northeastern Venezuela and south of Grenada in the Lesser Antilles. It shares maritime boundaries with other nations including Barbados to the northeast, Guyana to the southeast, and Venezuela to the south and westSony VPCEH2N1E battery.
The country covers an area 5,128 square kilometres (1,980 sq mi) and consists of two main islands, Trinidad and Tobago, and numerous smaller landforms. Trinidad is the larger and more populous of the main islands, comprising about 94% of the total area and 96% of the total population of the country. The nation lies outside the hurricane beltSony VPCEH2M9E battery.
The island of Trinidad was a Spanish colony from the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1498 to the capitulation of the Spanish Governor, Don José Maria Chacón, on the arrival of a British fleet of 18 warships on 18 February 1797. During the same period, the island of Tobago changed hands between Spanish, British, French, Dutch and Courlander colonizersSony VPCEH2M1E battery. Trinidad and Tobago was ceded to Britain in 1802 under the Treaty of Amiens. The country obtained independence in 1962, becoming a republic in 1976. Unlike most of the English-speaking Caribbean, Trinidad and Tobago's economy is primarily industrial, with an emphasis on petroleum and petrochemicals.
Trinidad and Tobago is known for its Carnival and is the birthplace of steelpan, calypso, soca, chutney and limboSony VPCEH2L9E battery.
Historian E.L. Joseph claimed that Trinidad’s Amerindian name was Iere, derived from the Arawak name for hummingbird, ierèttê or yerettê. However, Boomert claims that neither cairi nor caeri means hummingbird and tukusi or tucuchi does. Others have reported that kairi and iere simply mean island. Christopher Columbus renamed it "La Isla de la Trinidad" Sony VPCEH2J1E battery ("The Island of the Trinity"), fulfilling a vow made before setting out on his third voyage of exploration.
Tobago's cigar-like shape may have given it its Spanish name (cabaco, tavaco, tobacco) and possibly its Amerindian names of Aloubaéra (black conch) and Urupaina (big snail), although the English pronunciation is /təˈbeɪɡoʊ/, rhyming with plumbago and sago.
Both Trinidad and Tobago were originally settled by Amerindians of South American originSony VPCEH2H1E battery. Trinidad was first settled by pre-agricultural Archaic people at least 7,000 years ago, making it the earliest-settled part of the Caribbean. Ceramic-using agriculturalists settled Trinidad around 250 BC, and then moved further up the Lesser Antillean chain. At the time of European contact, Trinidad was occupied by various Arawakan-speaking groups including the Nepoya and Suppoya, and Cariban-speaking groups such as the Yao, while Tobago was occupied by the Island Caribs and GalibiSony VPCEH2F1E battery.
Parlatuvier Bay, a popular tourist destination in Tobago.
Christopher Columbus encountered the island of Trinidad on 31 July 1498. Antonio de Sedeño, a Spanish soldier intent on conquering the island of Trinidad, landed on its southwest coast with a small army of men in the 1530s as a means of controlling the Orinoco and subduing the Warao. Sedeno and his men fought the native Carib Indians on many occasionsSony VPCEH2E0E battery, and subsequently built a fort. Cacique Wannawanare (Guanaguanare) granted the St Joseph area to Domingo de Vera e Ibargüen in 1592, and then withdrew to another part of the island. San José de Oruña (St Joseph) was established by Antonio de Berrío on this land. Sir Walter Raleigh, searching for the long-rumored "City of Gold" in South America, arrived in Trinidad on 22 March 1595 and soon attacked San José andSony VPCEH2D0E battery captured and interrogated de Berrío, obtaining much information from him and from the cacique Topiawari.
In the 1700s, Trinidad belonged as an island province to the Viceroyalty of New Spain together with Central America, present-day Mexico and Southwestern United States. However, Trinidad in this period was still mostly forest, populated by a few Spaniards with their handful of slaves and a few thousand Amerindians. Sony VPCEH2C0E batterySpanish colonisation in Trinidad remained tenuous. Because Trinidad was considered underpopulated, Roume de St. Laurent, a Frenchman living in Grenada, was able to obtain a Cédula de Población from the Spanish king Charles III on 4 November 1783.
This Cédula de Población was more generous than the first of 1776, and granted free lands to Roman Catholic foreign settlers and their slaves in Trinidad willing to swear allegiance to the Spanish king. The land grant was 30 fanegas (13 hectares/32 acres) for each manSony VAIO VGN-CS33H battery, woman and child and half of that for each slave brought. As a result, Scots, Irish, German, Italian and English families arrived. Protestants benefited from Governor Don José María Chacon's generous interpretation of the law. The French Revolution (1789) also had an impact on Trinidad's culture, as it resulted in the emigration of Martiniquan planters and their slaves to Trinidad where they established an agriculture-based economy (sugar and cocoa) for the islandSony VAIO VGN-CS33H/Z battery.
The population of Port of Spain increased from under 3,000 to 10,422 in five years, and the inhabitants in 1797 consisted of people of mixed race, Spaniards, Africans, French republican soldiers, retired pirates and French nobility. The total population of Trinidad in 1797 was 17,718, of which 2,151 were of European ancestry, 4,476 were "free blacks and people of colour", 10,009 were slaves and 1,082 AmerindiansSony VAIO VGN-CS33H/B battery.
In 1797, General Sir Ralph Abercromby and his squadron sailed through the Bocas and anchored off the coast of Chaguaramas. The Spanish Governor Chacon decided to capitulate without fighting. Trinidad became a British crown colony, with a French-speaking population and Spanish laws. The conquest and formal ceding of Trinidad in 1802 led to an influx of settlers from England or the British colonies of the Eastern CaribbeanSony VAIO VGN-CS31Z/Q battery. The sparse settlement and slow rate of population increase during Spanish rule and even after British rule made Trinidad one of the less-populated colonies of the West Indies with the least developed plantation infrastructure. Under British rule, new estates were created and slave importation increased to facilitate development of the land into highly profitable sugarcane estatesSony VAIO VGN-CS31S/W battery, but mass importation of slaves was still limited and hindered, arguably, by abolitionist efforts in Britain.
The Abolitionist movement and/or the decreased economic viability of slavery as a means of procuring labour both resulted in the abolition of slavery in 1833 via the Slavery Abolition Act 1845 (citation 3 & 4 Will. IV c. 73), which was followed by its substitution by an "apprenticeship" periodSony VAIO VGN-CS31S/V battery. This was also abolished in 1838, with full emancipation being granted on 1 August. An overview of the populations statistics in 1838, however, clearly reveals the contrast between Trinidad and its neighbouring islands: upon emancipation of the slaves in 1838, Trinidad had only 17,439 slaves, with 80% of slave owners having less than 10 slaves each. Sony VAIO VGN-CS31S/T battery
In contrast, at twice the size of Trinidad, Jamaica had roughly 360,000 slaves. Upon emancipation, therefore, the incipient plantation owners were in severe need of labour, and the British filled this need by instituting a system of indenture. Various nationalities were contracted under this system, including Chinese, Portuguese and Indians. Of theseSony VAIO VGN-CS31S/R battery, the Indians were imported in the largest numbers, starting from 1 May 1845, when 225 Indians were brought in the first shipment to Trinidad on the Fatel Rozack, a Muslim-owned vessel Indentureship of the Indians lasted from 1845 to 1917, over which more than 147,000 Indians were brought to Trinidad to work on sugarcane plantations. Sony VAIO VGN-CS31S/P battery
They added what was initially the second-largest population grouping to the young nation, and their labour developed previously underdeveloped plantation lands. The indenture contract was exploitative, such that historians including Hugh Tinker were to call it "a new system of slavery". Persons were contracted for a period of five years with a daily wage Sony VAIO VGN-CS28 battery (25 cents in the early 20th century), after which they were guaranteed return passage to India. Coercive means were often used to obtain labourers, however, and the indentureship contracts were soon extended to 10 years after the planters complained they were losing their labour too earlySony VAIO VGN-CS28/Q battery.
In lieu of the return passage, the British authorities soon began offering portions of land to encourage settlement; however, the numbers of people who did receive land grants is unclear. Indians entering the colony were also subject to particular crown laws which segregated them from the rest of the Trinidad populationSony VAIO VGN-CS27 battery, such as the requirement that they carry a "Pass" on their person once off the plantations, and that if freed, they carry their "Free Papers" or certificate indicating completion of the indentureship period. Despite this, however, the ex-Indentureds came to constitute a vital and significant section of the population, as did the ex-slavesSony VAIO VGN-CS27/W battery.
The cacao (cocoa) crop also contributed greatly to the economic earnings in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. After the collapse of the cacao crop (due to disease and the Great Depression), petroleum increasingly came to dominate the economy. The collapse of the sugarcane industry concomitant with the failure of the cocoa industry resulted in widespread depression among the rural and agricultural workers in TrinidadSony VAIO VGN-CS27/R battery, and encouraged the rise of the Labour movement in the 1920 -1930 period. This was led by Tubal Uriah "Buzz" Butler, who, in combination with his Indian partners (notably Adrian Cola Rienzi), aimed to unite the working class and agricultural labouring class to achieve a better standard of living for all, as well as to hasten the departure of the British. This effort was severely undermined by the British Home Office and by the British-educated Trinidadian eliteSony VAIO VGN-CS27/P battery, many of whom were descended from the plantocracy themselves. They instigated a vicious race politicking in Trinidad that aimed at dividing the class-based movement on race-based lines, and they succeeded, especially since Butler's support collapsed from the top down. The Depression and the rise of the oil economy led to changes in the social structure. By the 1950sSony VAIO VGN-CS27/C battery, petroleum had become a staple in Trinidad's export market, and was responsible for a growing middle class among all sections of the Trinidad population.
Columbus reported seeing Tobago on the distant horizon in 1498, naming it Bellaforma, but did not land on the island. The present name of Tobago is thought to be a corruption of its old name, "Tobaco".Sony VAIO VGN-CS26T/W battery
A view from Pigeon Point, Tobago over to Nomansland
The Dutch and the Courlanders (people from the small duchy of Courland and Semigallia in modern-day Latvia) established themselves in Tobago in the 16th and 17th centuries and produced tobacco and cotton. Over the centuries, Tobago changed hands between Spanish, British, French, Dutch and Courlander colonizersSony VAIO VGN-CS26T/V battery. Britain consolidated its hold on both islands during the Napoleonic Wars, and they were combined into the colony of Trinidad and Tobago in 1889.
As a result of these colonial struggles, Amerindian, Spanish, French and English place names are all common in the country. African slaves and Chinese, Indian, Tamil and free African indentured labourers, as well as Portuguese from Madeira, arrived to supply labour in the nineteenth and early twentieth centurySony VAIO VGN-CS26T/T battery. Emigration from Barbados and the other Lesser Antilles, Venezuela, Syria, and Lebanon also impacted on the ethnic make-up of the country.
Trinidad and Tobago gained its independence from the United Kingdom in 1962. Eric Williams, a noted Caribbean historian, widely regarded as "The Father of The Nation," was the first Prime Minister; he served from 1956, before independence, until his death in 1981Sony VAIO VGN-CS26T/R battery.
The presence of American military bases in Chaguaramas and Cumuto in Trinidad during World War II profoundly changed the character of society. In the post-war period, the wave of decolonisation that swept the British Empire led to the formation of the West Indies Federation in 1958 as a vehicle for independence. Chaguaramas was the proposed site for the federal capital. The Federation dissolved after the withdrawal of Jamaica and the government chose to seek independence on its ownSony VAIO VGN-CS26T/Q battery.
In 1976, the country severed its links with the British monarchy and became a republic within the Commonwealth, though it retained the British Privy Council as its final Court of Appeal. Between the years 1972 and 1983, the Republic profited greatly from the rising price of oil, as the oil-rich country increased its living standards greatly. In 1990, 114 members of the Jamaat al MuslimeenSony VAIO VGN-CS26T/P battery, led by Yasin Abu Bakr, formerly known as Lennox Phillip, stormed the Red House (the seat of Parliament), and Trinidad and Tobago Television, the only television station in the country at the time, and held the country's government hostage for six days before surrendering. Since 2003, the country has entered a second oil boom, a driving force which the government hopes to use to turn the country's main export back to sugar and agriculture. Sony VAIO VGN-CS26T/C batteryGreat concern was raised in August 2007 when it was predicted that this boom would last only until 2018. Petroleum, petrochemicals and natural gas continue to be the backbone of the economy. Tourism and the public service are the mainstay of the economy of Tobago, though authorities have begun to diversify the island. The bulk of tourist arrivals on the islands are from Western EuropeSony VAIO VGN-CS25H battery.
Main article: Politics of Trinidad and Tobago
The Red House: Trinidad and Tobago's Parliament Chamber 2008 (undergoing renovations).
Trinidad and Tobago is a republic with a two-party system and a bicameral parliamentary system based on the Westminster System. The head of state of Trinidad and Tobago is the President, currently George Maxwell RichardsSony VAIO VGN-CS23T/Q battery. The head of government is the Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar. The President is elected by an Electoral College consisting of the full membership of both houses of Parliament. The Prime Minister is elected from the results of a general election which takes place every five years.
The President is required to appoint the leader of the party who in his opinion has the most support of the members of the House of Representatives to this postSony VAIO VGN-CS23H battery; this has generally been the leader of the party which won the most seats in the previous election (except in the case of the 2001 General Elections). Tobago also has its own elections, separate from the general elections. In these elections, members are elected and serve in the Tobago House of Assembly.
The Parliament consists of two chambers, the Senate (31 seats) and the House of Representatives (41 seats). Sony VAIO VGN-CS23H/S battery The members of the Senate are appointed by the president. Sixteen Government Senators are appointed on the advice of the Prime Minister, six Opposition Senators are appointed on the advice of the Leader of the Opposition and nine Independent Senators are appointed by the President to represent other sectors of civil society. The 41 members of the House of Representatives are elected by the people for a maximum term of five years in a "first past the post" systemSony VAIO VGN-CS23H/B battery.
From 24 December 2001 to 24 May 2010, the governing party has been the People's National Movement (PNM) led by Patrick Manning; the Opposition party was the United National Congress (UNC) led by Basdeo Pandey. Another recent party was the Congress of the People, or COP, led by Winston DookeranSony VAIO VGN-CS23G battery. Support for these parties appears to fall along ethnic lines with the PNM consistently obtaining a majority Afro-Trinidadian vote, and the UNC gaining a majority of Indo-Trinidadian support. COP gained 23% of the votes in the 2007 general elections but failed to win a seat. Prior to 24 May 2010, the PNM held 26 seats in the House of Representatives and the UNC Alliance (UNC-A) held 15 seats, following elections held on 5 November 2007Sony VAIO VGN-CS23G/Q battery.
Basdeo Panday became the first Indo-Trinidadian prime minister in 1995.
After just two and a half years, Prime Minister Patrick Manning dissolved Parliament in April 2010, and called a general election on 24 May 2010. After these general elections, the new governing coalition is the People's Partnership led by Kamla Persad-Bissessar. Persad-Bissessar and “the People’s Partnership” wrested power from the Patrick Manning-led PNMSony VAIO VGN-CS23G/P battery, taking home 29 seats to the PNM’s 12 seats, based on preliminary results.
There are 14 municipal corporations (two cities, three boroughs, and nine regions), which have a limited level of autonomy. The various councils are made up of a mixture of elected and appointed members. Elections are due to be held every three years, but have not been held since 2003, four extensions having been sought by the governmentSony VAIO VGN-CS21Z/Q battery.
Trinidad and Tobago is a leading member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME), of which only the Caribbean Single Market (CSM) is in force. It is also the seat of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ), which was inaugurated on 16 April 2005Sony VAIO VGN-CS21S/W battery. The CCJ is intended to replace the British Judicial Committee of the Privy Council as the final Appellate Court for the member states of the CARICOM. Since its inauguration, only two states, Barbados and Guyana, have acceded to the appellate jurisdiction of the CCJ. The CCJ also serves as an original jurisdiction in the interpretation of the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas, to which all members of CARICOM have accededSony VAIO VGN-CS21S/V battery.
Trinidad is split into 14 regional corporations and municipalities, consisting of 9 regions and 5 municipalities and administered by the Municipal Corporations Act 21 of 1990 and its amendments. The island of Tobago is governed by the Tobago House of Assembly:
Main article: Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force
Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard members during a practice exercise at Staubles Bay in Chaguaramas for the arrival of Prince Charles in 2008Sony VAIO VGN-CS21S/T battery.
The Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force (TTDF) is the military organisation responsible for the defence of the twin island Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. It consists of the Regiment, the Coast Guard, the Air Guard and the Defence Force Reserves. Established in 1962 after Trinidad and Tobago's independence from Britain, the TTDF is one of the largest military forces in the English-speaking Caribbean. Sony VAIO VGN-CS21S/P battery
Its mission statement is to "defend the sovereign good of The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, contribute to the development of the national community and support the State in the fulfillment of its national and international objectives". The Defence Force has been engaged in domestic incidents, such as the 1990 Coup Attempt, and international missions, such as the United Nations Mission in Haiti between 1993 and 1996Sony VAIO VGN-CS215J/Q battery.
Mayaro Beach in the south-eastern area of Trinidad
Trinidad and Tobago are southeasterly islands of the Antilles, situated between 10° 2' and 11° 12' N latitude and 60° 30' and 61° 56' W longitude. At the closest point, Trinidad is just 11 kilometres (6.8 mi) off the Venezuelan coast. Covering an area of 5,128 km2 (1,980 sq mi), the country consists of the two main islands, Trinidad and Tobago, and numerous smaller landformsSony VAIO VGN-CS19/W battery – including Chacachacare, Monos, Huevos, Gaspar Grande (or Gasparee), Little Tobago, and St. Giles Island. Trinidad is 4,768 km2 (1,841 sq mi) in area (comprising 93.0% of the country's total area) with an average length of 80 km (50 mi) and an average width of 59 kilometres (37 mi).
Tobago has an area of about 300 km2 (120 sq mi), or 5.8% of the country's area, is 41 km (25 mi) long and 12 km (7.5 mi) at its greatest widthSony VAIO VGN-CS19/R battery. Trinidad and Tobago lie on the continental shelf of South America, and is thus geologically considered to lie entirely in South America. However, the Caribbean islands are generally considered to be part of North America, and as the language and cultural links of Trinidad and Tobago are not to South America, but to the rest of the English-speaking Caribbean nations, the nation is often treated as part of North AmericaSony VAIO VGN-CS19/Q battery.
Although it is located just offshore from South America, Trinidad and Tobago is generally included as part of the West Indies by virtue of its geographical and historical heritage in the Caribbean.
Hillside along Diego Martin
The terrain of the islands is a mixture of mountains and plains. The highest point in the country is found on the Northern Range at El Cerro del Aripo, which is 940 metres (3,080 ft) above sea levelSony VAIO VGN-CS19/P battery.
As the majority of the population live in Trinidad, this is the location of most major towns and cities. There are three major municipalities in Trinidad: Port of Spain, the capital, San Fernando, and Chaguanas. The main town in Tobago is Scarborough. Trinidad is made up of a variety of soil types, the majority being fine sands and heavy clays. The alluvial valleys of the Northern Range and the soils of the East-West Corridor are the most fertileSony VAIO VGN-CS17H/W battery.
The Chaconia (Warszewiczia coccinea) is the national flower of Trinidad and Tobago.
The Northern Range consists mainly of Upper Jurassic and Cretaceous metamorphic rocks. The Northern Lowlands (East-West Corridor and Caroni Plains) consist of younger shallow marine clastic sediments. South of this, the Central Range fold and thrust belt consists of Cretaceous and Eocene sedimentary rocks, with Miocene formations along the southern and eastern flanksSony VAIO VGN-CS17H/Q battery. The Naparima Plains and the Nariva Swamp form the southern shoulder of this uplift.
The Southern Lowlands consist of Miocene and Pliocene sands, clays, and gravels. These overlie oil and natural gas deposits, especially north of the Los Bajos Fault. The Southern Range forms the third anticlinal uplift. It consists of several chains of hills, most famous being the Trinity Hills. The rocks consist of sandstonesSony VAIO VGN-CS16T/W battery, shales and siltstones and clays formed in the Miocene and uplifted in the Pleistocene. Oil sands and mud volcanoes are especially common in this area.
The climate is tropical. There are two seasons annually: the dry season for the first six months of the year, and the wet season in the second half of the year. Winds are predominantly from the northeast and are dominated by the northeast trade winds. Unlike most of the other Caribbean islandsSony VAIO VGN-CS16T/T battery, both Trinidad and Tobago have frequently escaped the wrath of major devastating hurricanes, including Hurricane Ivan, the most powerful storm to pass close to the islands in recent history, in September 2004.
Record temperatures for Trindad and Tobago are 38°C (100.4°F) for the high in Port of Spain and -15°C (5°F) on El Cerro Del Aripo for the low. Sony VAIO VGN-CS16T/R battery
Being so close to continental South America, the biological diversity of Trinidad and Tobago is unlike that of most other Caribbean islands, and has much in common with Venezuela. That biodiversity is distributed through the following main ecosystems: coastal and marine (coral reefs, mangrove swamps, open ocean and seagrass beds), forest, freshwater (rivers and streams) Sony VAIO VGN-CS16T/Q battery, karst, man-made ecosystems (agricultural land, freshwater dams, secondary forest), and savanna. On 1 August 1996, Trinidad and Tobago ratified the 1992 Rio Convention on Biological Diversity, and has produced a biodiversity action plan and four reports describing the country's contribution to biodiversity conservation. The importance of biodiversity to the well-being of the country's people through provision of ecosystem services was formally acknowledged. Sony VAIO VGN-CS16T/P battery
Information about vertebrates is good, with 467 bird species (1 endemic), more than 100 mammals, about 90 reptiles (1 endemic), about 30 amphibians (1 endemic), 50 freshwater fish and at least 950 marine fish. Information about invertebrates is dispersed and very incomplete. About 650 butterflies, at least 672 beetles (from Tobago alone) and 40 corals have been recordedSony VAIO VGN-CS13T/W battery.
Although the list is far from complete, 1647 species of fungi, including lichens, have been recorded. The true total number of fungi is likely to be far higher, given the generally accepted estimate that only about 7% of all fungi worldwide have so far been discovered. A first effort to estimate the number of endemic fungi tentatively listed 407 species. Sony VAIO VGN-CS13H/W battery
Information about micro-organisms is dispersed and very incomplete. Nearly 200 species of marine algae have been recorded. The true total number of micro-organism species must be much higher.
Thanks to a recently published checklist, plant diversity in Trinidad and Tobago is well documented with about 3,300 species (59 endemic) recorded. Sony VAIO VGN-CS13H/R battery
Trinidad is one of the wealthiest and most developed nations in the Caribbean and is listed in the top 40 (2010 information) of the 70 High Income countries in the world. It has one of the highest GDP per capita of USD $20,300 (2011) in the Caribbean. In November 2011, the OECD removed Trinidad and Tobago from its list of Developing Countries. Sony VAIO VGN-CS13H/Q battery Trinidad's economy is strongly influenced by the petroleum industry. Tourism and manufacturing are also important to the local economy. Tourism is a growing sector, although not proportionately as important as in many other Caribbean islands. Agricultural products include citrus, cocoa, and other productsSony VAIO VGN-CS13H/P battery.
Recent growth has been fueled by investments in liquefied natural gas (LNG), petrochemicals, and steel. Additional petrochemical, aluminum, and plastics projects are in various stages of planning. Trinidad and Tobago is the leading Caribbean producer of oil and gas, and its economy is heavily dependent upon these resources but it also supplies manufactured goods, notably food and beverages, as well as cement to the Caribbean regionSony VAIO VGN-CS11Z/T battery.
Graphical depiction of Trinidad and Tobago's product exports in 28 color coded categories.
Oil and gas account for about 40% of GDP and 80% of exports, but only 5% of employment. The country is also a regional financial centre, and the economy has a growing trade surplus. The expansion of Atlantic LNG over the past six years created the largest single-sustained phase of economic growth in Trinidad and TobagoSony VAIO VGN-CS11Z/R battery. It has become the leading exporter of LNG to the United States, and now supplies some 70% of U.S. LNG imports.
Trinidad and Tobago has transitioned from an oil-based economy to a natural gas based economy. In 2007, natural gas production averaged 4 billion cubic feet per day (110,000,000 m3/d), compared with 3.2×106 cu ft/d (91,000 m3/d) in 2005. In December 2005, the Atlantic LNG fourth production module or "train" for liquefied natural gas (LNG) began productionSony VAIO VGN-CS11S/W battery. Train 4 has increased Atlantic LNG's overall output capacity by almost 50% and is the largest LNG train in the world at 5.2 million tons/year of LNG.
Trinidad and Tobago's infrastructure is good by regional standards.[original research?] The international airport in Trinidad was expanded in 2001. There is an extensive network of paved roads with several good four and six lane highways including one controlled access expresswaySony VAIO VGN-CS11S/Q battery. The Ministry of Works estimates that an average Trinidadian spends about four hours in traffic per day. Emergency services are reliable, but may suffer delays in rural districts. Private hospitals are available and reliable. Utilities are fairly reliable in the cities. Some areas, however, especially rural districts, still suffer from water sho
Telephone service is relatively modern and reliable.[original research?] Cellular service is widespread and has been the major area of growth for several years. Telecommunications Services of Trinidad and Tobago Limited (generally known as TSTT) is the largest telephone and Internet service provider in Trinidad and Tobago. The company, which is jointly owned by the Government of Trinidad and Tobago and Cable & Wireless(Sony VAIO VGN-AW11M/H battery), was formed out of a merger of Telco (Trinidad and Tobago Telephone Company Limited) and Textel (Trinidad and Tobago External Telecommunications Company Limited). TSTT no longer holds a monopoly in fixed-line telephone services due to Flow introducing a fixed-line service of their own, and their cellular monopoly was broken in June 2005 when licences were granted to Digicel and Laqtel. Laqtel however never started business(Sony VAIO VGN-AW11S/B battery).
Intersection of Churchill–Roosevelt Highway & Uriah Butler Highway 2009
The transport system in Trinidad and Tobago consists of a network of roads across both major islands, ferries connecting Port of Spain with Scarborough and San Fernando, and commercial airports on both islands. Public transportation options on land are public buses, private taxis and minibuses. By sea, the options are inter-island ferries and inter-city water taxis. (Sony VAIO VGN-AW11Z/B battery)
The island of Trinidad is served by Piarco International Airport located in Piarco. It was opened on 8 January 1931. Elevated at 17.4 metres (57 ft) above sea level it comprises an area of 680 hectares (1,700 acres) and has a runway of 3,200 metres (10,500 ft). The airport consists of two terminals, the North Terminal and the South Terminal(Sony VAIO VGN-AW19/Q battery). The older South Terminal underwent renovations in 2009 for use as a VIP entrance point during the 5th Summit of the Americas. The North Terminal was completed in 2001, and consists of 14 second-level aircraft gates with loading bridges from the aircraft to the terminal building for international flights, two ground-level domestic gates and 82 ticket counter positions(Sony VAIO VGN-AW19 battery).
Piarco International Airport was voted the Caribbean’s leading airport for customer satisfaction and operational efficiency at the prestigious World Travel Awards (WTA), held in the Turks and Caicos in 2006. In 2008 the passenger throughput at Piarco International Airport was approximately 2.6 million. As of December 2006, nineteen international airlines operated out of Piarco and offered flights to twenty-seven international destinations(Sony VAIO VGN-AW21M/H battery). Caribbean Airlines, the national airline, operates its main hub at the Piarco International Airport and services the Caribbean, the United States, Canada and South America. The airline is wholly owned by the Government of Trinidad and Tobago. After an additional cash injection of US$50 million, the Trinidad and Tobago government acquired the Jamaican airline Air Jamaica on 1 May 2010, with a 6–12 month transition period to follow.(Sony VAIO VGN-AW21S/B battery)
As of 2005, most (96%) of the country's 1.3 million inhabitants reside on the island of Trinidad with the remainder (4%) in Tobago. The ethnic composition of Trinidad and Tobago reflects a history of conquest and immigration. Two major ethnic groups, Indo-Trinidadian and Tobagonians and Afro-Trinidadian and Tobagonians, account for almost 80% of the population(Sony VAIO VGN-AW21VY/Q battery), while people of mixed race, European, Chinese, Syrian–Lebanese and Amerindian descent make up most of the rest of the population.
Many different religions are present in Trinidad and Tobago. Among Christian denominations (65.7%) are Roman Catholics, Anglicans, Seventh-day Adventists, Presbyterians, Methodists, Jehovah's Witnesses and other Evangelical groups. Other religious groups include Hindus (25.6%) and Muslims (6.6%) (2000 census). (SONY Vaio VGN-NS38M Battery)
Two African syncretic faiths, the Shouter or Spiritual Baptists and the Orisha faith (formerly called Shangos, a less than complimentary term) are among the fastest growing religious groups.
Similarly, there is a noticeable increase in numbers of a number of evangelical and fundamentalist churches usually lumped as "Pentecostal" by most Trinidadians (although this designation is often inaccurate) (SONY Vaio VGN-NS31S Battery).
A small Judaic community exists, as well as several other Eastern religions such as Buddhism and Taoism are followed by the Chinese community. There is also a small Baha'i community.
English is the country's official language, Spanish is the official secondary language. (the local variety of standard English is known as Trinidadian English), but the main spoken language is either of two English-based creole languages (Trinidadian Creole or Tobagonian Creole) (SONY Vaio VGN-NS31M Battery) which reflects the Indian, African and European (including Spanish) heritage of the nation. Both creoles contain elements from a variety of African languages; Trinidadian Creole, however, is also influenced by French. Spanish is estimated to be spoken by around 5% of the population. (SONY Vaio VGN-NS31Z Battery)
Most of the Indian arrivals spoke Bhojpuri and attempts are being made to preserve this, including the promotion of an Indo-Trinidadian musical form called Pichakaree, which is typically sung in a mixture of English, Hindi and Bhojpuri.
Some Indians speak Tamil also in Trinidad.
Main article: Education in Trinidad and Tobago
Children generally start pre-school at the early age of two and a half years. This level of tuition is not mandatory but most children start school at this stage as children are expected to have basic reading and writing skills when they commence primary school(SONY Vaio VGN-NS21Z Battery). Students proceed to a primary school at the age of 5 years. Seven years are spent in primary school. The seven classes of primary school consists of First Year and Second Year, followed by Standard One through Standard Five. During the final year of primary school, students prepare for and sit the Secondary Entrance Assessment (SEA) which determines the secondary school the child will attend(SONY Vaio VGN-NS21M Battery).
Students attend secondary school for a minimum of five years, leading to the CSEC (Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate) examinations, which is the equivalent of the British GCSE O levels. Children with satisfactory grades may opt to continue high school for a further two year period, leading to the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examinations (CAPE) (SONY Vaio VGN-NS21S Battery), the equivalent of GCE A levels. Both CSEC and CAPE examinations are held by the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC). Public Primary and Secondary education is free for all, although private and religious schooling is available for a fee.
Tertiary education is also free for all, up to the level of the Bachelors degree, at the University of the West Indies (UWI), the University of Trinidad and Tobago (UTT) (SONY Vaio VGN-NS12S Battery), the University of the Southern Caribbean (USC), the College of Science, Technology and Applied Arts of Trinidad and Tobago (COSTAATT) and certain other local accredited institutions. Government also currently subsidises some Masters programmes. Both the Government and the private sector also provide financial assistance in the form of academic scholarships to gifted or needy students for study at local, regional or international universities(SONY Vaio VGN-NS12M Battery).
Members of a Costume band parade on the streets of Port of Spain during its pre-Lenten Carnival
Trinidad and Tobago is the birthplace of calypso music and the steelpan, which is widely claimed in Trinidad and Tobago to be the only acoustic musical instrument invented during the 20th century. Trinidad is also the birthplace of Soca, Chutney, Parang(SONY Vaio VGN-NS11Z Battery), and Carnival (in the form that has been widely copied in the Caribbean and around the world). The diverse cultural and religious background also allows for many festivities and ceremonies throughout the year.
Trinidad and Tobago claims two Nobel Prize-winning authors, V.S. Naipaul and St Lucian-born Derek Walcott (who founded the Trinidad Theatre Workshop, working and raising a family in Trinidad for much of his career) (SONY Vaio VGN-NS11M Battery). Edmundo Ros, the "King of Latin American Music", was born in Port of Spain. Designer Peter Minshall is renowned not only for his Carnival costumes, but also for his role in opening ceremonies of the Barcelona Olympics, the 1994 Football World Cup, the 1996 Summer Olympics and the 2002 Winter Olympics, for which he won an Emmy Award(SONY Vaio VGN-NS11L Battery).
Geoffrey Holder, brother of Boscoe Holder, and Heather Headley are two Trinidad-born artists who have won Tony Awards for theatre. Holder also has a distinguished film career, and Headley has won a Grammy Award as well. Recording artists Billy Ocean and Nicki Minaj are also Trinidadian. Interestingly, four actors who appeared on Will Smith's sitcom "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" are Trinidadian: Tatyana Ali, Alfonso Ribeiro(SONY Vaio VGN-NS11J Battery), and Karyn Parsons were series regulars as Will's cousins Ashley, Carlton and Hillary respectively, while Nia Long played Will's girlfriend Lisa. Foxy Brown, Dean Marshall, Sommore, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Gabrielle Reece, pop singer Haddaway, and Tracy Quan are all of Trinidadian descent. Trinidad & Tobago also has the distinction of being the smallest country to have two Miss Universe titleholders: Janelle Commissiong in 1977 and Wendy Fitzwilliam in 1998(SONY Vaio VGN-NS11E Battery).
Hasely Crawford won the first Olympic gold medal for Trinidad and Tobago in the men's 100 m dash in the 1976 Summer Olympics. Nine different athletes from Trinidad and Tobago have won twelve medals at the Olympics, beginning with a silver medal in weightlifting, won by Rodney Wilkes in 1948, and most recently, a gold medal by Keshorn Walcott in the men's javelin throw in 2012(SONY Vaio VGN-NS10L Battery). Ato Boldon has won the most Olympic and World Championship medals for Trinidad and Tobago in athletics with eight in total – four from the Olympics and four from the World Championships. Boldon is the only world champion Trinidad and Tobago has produced to date in athletics. He won the 1997 200 m sprint World Championship in Athens. Swimmer George Bovell III has also won a bronze medal in the Men's 200m IM in 2004(SONY Vaio VGN-NS10J Battery). Also in 2012 Lalonde Gordon competed in the XXX Summer Olympics where he won a Bronze Medal in the 400 meters, being surpassed by Luguelin Santos of the Dominican Republic and Kirani James of Grenada. Keshorn Walcott ( as stated above ) came first in javelin and obtained a Gold medal making him the second Trinidadian in all of Trinidad and Tobago's history to obtain one(SONY Vaio VGN-NS10E Battery), this also makes him the first western athlete since about 40 years ago to obtain Gold in the javelin sport, and the first athlete from the country to win a gold medal in a field event in the Olympics.
See also: Cricket in the West Indies and Trinidad and Tobago national cricket team
Cricket is one of the most popular sports of Trinidad and Tobago, with intense inter-island rivalry with its Caribbean neighbours. Trinidad and Tobago is represented at Test cricket(SONY Vaio VGN-NS38M/W Battery), One Day International as well as Twenty20 cricket level as a member of the West Indies team. The national team plays at the first-class level in regional competitions. Trinidad and Tobago along with other islands from the Caribbean co-hosted the 2007 Cricket World Cup. Brian Lara, world record holder for the most runs scored both in a Test and in a First Class innings and other records, was born in a small town of Santa Cruz(SONY Vaio VGN-NS38M/P Battery), Trinidad and Tobago and is often referred to as the Prince of Port of Spain or simply the Prince. This legendary West Indian batsman is widely regarded as one of the best batsmen ever to have played the game, and is one of the most famous sporting icons in the country.
Main article: Football in Trinidad and Tobago
The national football team qualified for the 2006 FIFA World Cup for the first time by beating Bahrain in Manama on 16 November 2005, making them the smallest country ever (in terms of population) to qualify(SONY Vaio VGN-NS31Z/W Battery). The team, coached by Dutchman Leo Beenhakker, and led by Tobagonian-born captain Dwight Yorke, drew their first group game – against Sweden in Dortmund, 0–0, but lost the second game to England on late goals, 0–2. They were eliminated after losing 2–0 to Paraguay in the last game of the Group Stage. Prior to the 2006 World Cup qualification(SONY Vaio VGN-NS31Z/S Battery), T&T came agonisingly close in a controversial qualification campaign for the 1974 FIFA World Cup. Following the match, the referee of their critical game against Haiti was awarded a lifetime ban for his actions. Trinidad and Tobago again fell just short of qualifying for the World Cup in 1990, needing only a draw at home against the United States but losing 1–0. (SONY Vaio VGN-NS31Z/P Battery)Trinidad and Tobago hosted the 2001 FIFA U-17 World Championship, and hosted the 2010 FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup.
Netball has long been a popular sport in Trinidad and Tobago, although it has declined in popularity in recent years. At the Netball World Championships they co-won the event in 1979, were runners up in 1987, and second runners up in 1983(SONY Vaio VGN-NS31S/S Battery).
Rugby Union is played in Trinidad and Tobago.
Basketball is commonly played in Trinidad and Tobago in colleges, universities and throughout various urban basketball courts. Rugby continues to be a popular sport, and horse racing is regularly followed in the country.
There is also the Trinidad and Tobago national baseball team which is controlled by the Baseball/Softball Association of Trinidad and Tobago, and represents the nation in international competitions. The team is a provisional member of the Pan American Baseball Confederation(SONY Vaio VGN-NS31M/W Battery).