Explore the beauty of the Bahamas Just 30 minutes from Florida, The Bahamas offers convenience and and a true paradise Local Information

The Commonwealth of The Bahamas is an Atlantic Ocean archipelago of approximately 700 islands and cays. The Bahamas is 50 miles from Florida and can be reached from New York in two and a half hours.

The capital city and seat of government is in Nassau on New Providence Island. The remaining islands, often called the ‘Family Islands’ or ‘Out Islands,’ are unique and have their own history, character and charm.

Language

English is the official language.

Climate

Weather is semi-tropical and benefits from the North Atlantic trade winds.

Temperature averages:

Total Population

303,611 (2000 Government Census).

Time Zones

U.S. Eastern Standard Time (EST) is observed, which is five hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). Daylight saving time is in effect from April through October.

Currency

The Bahamian dollar (B$) is on par with the United States dollar (US$). At the same value, both are accepted everywhere.

Economy

Driven by tourism, international banking and other financial services, The Bahamas is one of the most prosperous economies in the Caribbean. It is the only independent country in the Latin-American Caribbean region to have an A3 rating from Moody’s for its sovereign debt. Retail and wholesale distributive trades, manufacturing, agriculture and fisheries are the other major sectors of the economy. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2000 was $4,860.0 million.

Tourism

The Bahamas ranks within the top five tourist destinations in the region, receiving 4.18 million air and cruise ship visitors in 2001. Tourism accounts for about 50% of the nation’s GDP.

Financial Services

For decades, the financial services sector has experienced continuous growth, propelled by The Bahamas’ attractive status as a tax-neutral environment with an uninterrupted stable political climate and solid private sector. Financial services accounts for roughly 20% + of the national GDP.

The Bahamas currently is home to approximately one-third of the world’s top 100 banks. More than 350 licensed banks and trust companies operate in The Bahamas.

Government

The Bahamas is an independent nation and a member of the British Commonwealth. The Bahamas has a governor general who is appointed by the queen and an elected prime minister and cabinet. The parliamentary democracy is based on the British Westminster System.

Investment

A strong tradition of democracy and political stability ensures The Bahamas keeps itslong-held reputation as a safe and stable location for investments.

Foreign nationals are encouraged to own second homes in The Bahamas. There are no restrictions on the repatriation of funds and/or profits from home sales or licensed business transactions.

Investors are attracted to the stability of the economy, which is steadied by the solid value of the Bahamian dollar.

Initiatives for Foreign National Home Ownership

Airports

Old Fort Bay is 10 minutes from the Nassau International Airport. Nassau also has excellent facilities for private aviation. Nassau’s Million Air FBO and Executive Flight Support both have been rated number one in the region for private terminals.

The Bahamas welcomes various international airlines including Delta, Continental, British Airways, American, Jet Blue, Virgin, Song Air and US Airways.

Schools

Private schools on the island of New Providence include the International Baccalaureate-accredited Lyford Cay School (nursery through high school), which is just around the corner, as well as others within a short drive.