|Population||419 thousand (2020)|
|State system||constitutional monarchy|
|Head of State||Elizabeth II.|
|Head of government||Johnny Briceno|
|Currency name||Belize dollar (BZD)|
|Nominal GDP (billion USD)||1.8|
|Economic growth (%)||12.3|
Belize is a de jure constitutional monarchy, as the head of state is the British Queen Elizabeth II. However, the country operates as a de facto parliamentary democracy and Belize’s political system copies the British political system. Although the British Queen is the official head of state, she is represented in Belize by the Governor-General, who is also the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces. The government is headed by the prime minister and his cabinet is made up of ministers, the government is also the bearer of executive power and “everyday politics”. Parliament consists of the House of Representatives (31 seats) and the Senate (12 seats). Legislative power is divided between the parliament and the government.
Belize is a country with a relatively small economy, which focuses mainly on agriculture and related industry, and recently the importance of tourism and construction has been growing. Annual GDP growth is very variable, ranging from 0.1-2.9% in 2015-2019, with a 14% drop in GDP in 2020. By the end of 2020, the total GDP should reach USD 1.65 billion. Belize’s trade balance is in deficit mainly due to the low prices and added value of the products that Belize exports – citrus, bananas, sugar (in 2019 the trade balance was -0.52 billion USD). Belize’s largest trading partners include the USA, the UK, the EU, Mexico, China, Guatemala, Jamaica and other neighboring countries. Belize’s biggest economic challenges include tax collection,
Tourism, construction and oil extraction are among the growing economic sectors. The pandemic has hit Belize very hard, as the country is heavily dependent on tourism (about 40% of GDP), however tourism can be expected to continue to grow and play an increasingly important role in the country’s economy.
Basic information about the territory
- System of governance and political tendencies in the country
- Foreign policy of the country
The system of governance and political tendencies in the country
The official head of state is the British Queen, but this is more of a symbolic function. The country operates on the same principle as the British political system. The Queen is represented in Belize by the Governor-General, who is also the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces. The government is headed by the prime minister, who holds executive power, and his cabinet is made up of ministers. Parliament consists of the House of Representatives (31 seats) and the Senate (12 seats). Legislative power is divided between the parliament and the government. The November elections to the House of Representatives were won by the center-left People’s United Party (PUP), which won 25 of the total 31 seats, defeating the center-right United Democratic Party (UDP), which won the remaining 6 seats. Check diseaseslearning to learn more about Belize political system.
Official State Name: Belize
Head of State: Queen Elizabeth II, represented by the Governor General
Composition of Government:
Governor General: Sir Colville Norbert Young
Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Economic Development and Investment: Johnny Briceño
Deputy Prime Minister (Deputy Prime Minister) and Minister of Natural Resources, Petroleum and Mining: Cordel Hyde
Minister for Foreign Affairs, Trade and Migration: Eamon Courtenay
Minister for National Defense and Border Security: Florencio Marin
Minister for Infrastructure Development and Housing: Julius Espat
Minister for Tourism and Expatriate Affairs: Anthony Mahler
Minister of Human Development, Families and Indigenous Affairs: Dolores Balderamos Garcia Minister of Health and Healthy Lifestyles: Michel Chebat
Minister of Rural Transformation, Community Development, Labor and Local Government: Oscar Requena
Minister of Agriculture, Food Security and Business: Abelardo Jose Mai
Minister of Justice and Attorney General: Magali Marin Young
Minister of Blue Economy and Civil Aviation: Andre Perez
Minister of Public Services and Logistics: Rodwell Ferguson
Minister of Interior and New Industries: Kareem Musa
Minister of Education, Culture, Science and Technology: Francis Fonseca
Minister of Civil Service, Constitutional and Political Reform: Henry Charles Usher
Minister of Youth, Sports and e-Governance: Kevin Bernard
Minister of Sustainable Development, Climate Change and Crisis Management: Orlando Habet
Foreign policy of the country
Belize is a member of the United Nations, the Organization of American States (OAS), SICA, CARICOM, the Association of Caribbean States (ACS), the WTO, the Commonwealth of Nations, and several other organizations. Belize maintains close relations especially with the USA, where the largest community of people with Belizean citizenship outside of Belize lives (approx. 85,000). Check themotorcyclers for Belize defense and foreign policy.
Number of inhabitants and population density:
According to the latest estimates, 419,199 inhabitants live in Belize (2020), the population density is 17 inhabitants/km2 (2019). In the years 2010–2017, the annual increase in the population reached an average of 1.9%. (2019) The rate of urbanization is 45.9% (2019).
The largest population group is Hispanic (50%), followed by Creole (21%), Mayan (10%), Garifuni (4.6%), and other races (14%).
English (official), Spanish, Belize Creole, Mayan languages, Garifuna
The most commonly professed religion is Roman Catholic with approx. 40%, followed by Protestant with 29% and 11% professing other religions. About 20% of the population do not profess any religion.