Anguilla is the northernmost of the islands in the Sotavento archipelago of
the Caribbean. Lowland, of coral origin. The islands enjoyed little attention
from the British Empire, due to their modest size - just under 96 square miles -
and its unsuitability for agriculture, caused by the lack of fresh water. From
1816 to 1871, Aguila, St. Kitts, Nevis and the Virgin Islands were administered
as one colony. In 1871, the Virgin Islands detached and the remaining remained
united, with the seat of government at St. Kitts.
- COUNTRYAAH.COM: Offers an alphabetical list of independent nations and
dependent territories in Central America. Also includes area and population
for each Central American country.
It remained until the colony of Anguilla-St. Kitts and Nevis became one of
the 5 Caribbean island communities, affiliated with the British throne. The
people of Anguilla rejected this innovation and launched a revolt against the
government of St. Kitts. Under the leadership of trader Ronald Webster, Anguilla
demanded an independent constitution. In March 1969, London sent troops to the
island to secure the deployment of a Colonial Commissioner, but the separatist
movement continued to be active.
Two years later, Anguilla obtained the right to self-government, and in 1976
a new constitution was introduced in the mother country, which introduced a
parliamentary government, under the control of the British Commission. But in
spite of this, in 1980, Anguilla only succeeded in permanently withdrawing from
the state society and becoming an independent nation associated with Britain -
and only after the Labor Party had seen itself forced to turn the government in
St. Kit's back!
The 1976 Constitution meant that an English-appointed governor should be
responsible for defense, foreign policy, internal security - including the
responsibility of the police - the public sector, the justice system, and tax
administration. The Governor was at the same time chairman of the Advisory
The first free elections, in accordance with the new constitution, were held
in 1976 and Ronald Webster was appointed head of government, but the following
year, in February, adopted a distrust agenda and he was replaced by opposition
leader Emile Gumbs. In the 1980 election, Webster's party, Anguilla's Unity
Party, achieved an overwhelming victory, sitting on 6 of Parliament's 7 seats. A
year later, the government faced fierce internal strife; Webster founded
Anguilla's People's Party, and in the 1981 election they captured 5 seats. The
two remaining seats went to Anguilla's National Party, led by Emile Gumbs.
In September, a deal was negotiated with the UK to introduce the changes that
would pave the way for an independent government.
On March 9, 1984, elections were held in accordance with the new Constitution
of 1982, which provided for the maintenance of the parliamentary system.
Anguilla's National Party obtained 53.8% of the vote and Emile Gumbs became
The new government tried to put in place a system of adding more power to the
Advisory Assembly while trying to attract more UK investment to the island's
economic infrastructure. At the request of the Council to introduce certain
constitutional amendments - mainly to address the issue of women's rights and
terms of persons born outside the island but with relatives residing in Anguilla
- the governor appointed a commission to draft a new constitution.
During the 1980s, the construction industry, especially used to hotel
construction, succeeded in reducing unemployment from 26% to 1%, but a
stagnation in the 90s and the economic recession in the US led to a decrease in
the number of tourists.
In 1991, Prime Minister Gumbs called for expanded cooperation between the
British colonies and the Organization of the Eastern Caribbean.
Revenue, based on cattle farming, salt extraction, shrimp fishing, and the
funds sent to the island by emigrants - especially residents of the United
States - declined in favor of revenue from construction, tourism and the
international banking world. In 1992, a law was passed that transferred the
responsibility for issuing licenses to foreign firms to the governor, Bryan
Canty; it should be seen as an attempt to more effectively control these.
In the March 1994 election, Hubert Hughes of Anguilla's Unity Party won. In
November, the Advisory Assembly introduced a new law regulating the activities
of multinational corporations. Hurricane Luis, which raged in 1995, had a major
adverse impact on the economy. In 1997 and partly in 1998, Anguilla had an
annual economic growth of 7% as a result of increased tourism from the United
States and the United Kingdom.
The March 2000 parliamentary elections were won by a coalition of ANA and
Anguilla's Democratic Party. The coalition had taken the name United Front and
put Osbourne Fleming on the post of government leader.
In November, the OECD placed Anguilla on the list of tax havens, demanding
that the country by December 31, 2001, enact laws to regulate financial
On May 9, 2001, a new census was conducted showing that the population had
grown by 22%. A little less than expected. The number of children was increased
by 30%. Than slightly higher than expected.
In April 2003, British Cable & Wireless lost its monopoly on communications
in Anguilla. Although the country's authorities did not set an exact date on
when other companies would be closed, the legislation regulating the new
situation in the telecommunications market was drafted. Acc. Attorney General
Ronald Scipio will have a positive impact on the economic liberalization of the
economy, as it will give local businesses new opportunities and open up
investment from outside.
Anguilla's National Alliance and Anguilla's Democratic Party, gathered in the
United Front, became the big victor at the February 2005 parliamentary
elections, taking 4 of the 7 seats. The National Alliance got 34.1% of the vote
and 3 seats, while the Democratic Party got 10.8%. Anguilla's United Movement
became the second largest party with 12.1% and 2 seats in parliament.
In 2006 and 07, a significant number of Chinese, Mexican and Indian workers
came to the country to work in the tourism industry, which had grown so strongly
in previous years that the indigenous population could not fill the necessary
Hundreds of Indian workers supported by the local population demonstrated in
the streets of The Valley in July 2007 demanding agreements. Until then, Indian
workers had to live for an average of US $ 180 a month.
Hubert Hughes became Anguilla's prime minister in February 2010. His stated
goal is independence from the British colonial power, and this, despite the fact
that it would mean stopping EU aid, and stopping visa-free access to the United
States, Canada and the French and Dutch colonies in the Caribbean.
Anguilla's energy needs in 2012 were covered by solar energy for 15%.
The Conservative Anguilla United Front (AUF) won the election in April 2015,
gaining 6 out of the Assembly's 7 seats. The former government party AUM, in
turn, lost its 4 seats. Subsequently, the AUF's Victor Banks was appointed as
head of government.
Anguilla was directly hit by Category 5 Hurricane Irma in September 2017. One
was killed and the hurricane caused enormous devastation. However, not as
devastating as Barbuda, which subsequently had to be 100% evacuated.