St. Lucia is an independent country in the Commonwealth, gaining independence from Great Britain on February 22, 1979, a day annually celebrated.The country's history has been influenced by the indigenous Caribbean people, Africans, Britons and French.
St. Lucia is an island in the Lesser Antilles region of the East Caribbean and covers an area of 617 km2. It is one of the Windward Islands and is more mountainous than most of the Caribbean islands, with the highest point being Mount Gimie at 950 meters above sea level. Two other mountains, Pitons, form the island's most famous landmark. The island's natural beauty makes it a popular tourist destination, with attractions including rainforest, national parks, botanical gardens, world heritage sites, stunning beaches and even a volcano. English is the official language of St. Lucia, however, locals also speak French Creole.
St. Lucia is a member of the United Nations, CARICOM, OECS and the Eastern Caribbean Monetary Union. Its regional currency (East Caribbean Dollar, XCD) has been pegged to the US Dollar at a rate of 2.70 since 1976.
The island nation attracts foreign businesses and investment, especially in the international banking and tourism industries. Tourism is the main source of employment, foreign currency and income for St. Lucia, which accounts for 65% of employment and income and 65% of its GDP. Its production is the most diverse in the Eastern Caribbean region. Crops such as banana, mango, and avocado are grown for export.
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