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Saint Vincent and the Grenadines


Saint Vincent and the Grenadines has a democratic parliamentary system of government and a written constitution that was adopted at the time of independence in 1979. The country is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations and recognizes the British monarch as its own monarch and head of state. The monarch is represented by the governor-general, but actual power is exercised by a prime minister, who is responsible to the parliament. The prime minister has by tradition been the head of the leading political party in parliament.

The single-chamber parliament, known as the House of Assembly, consists of 21 members; 15 are popularly elected, and 6 are appointed by the governor-general on recommendations from the prime minister and the opposition leader. Although Saint Vincent is divided into six parishes, it has no local government and all decisions are made on the national level. The main political parties are the New Democratic Party and the Unity Labour Party.

In addition to the Commonwealth of Nations, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is a member of the Organization of American States, the United Nations, and the World Trade Organization. It has economic ties with other Caribbean countries through membership in the Caribbean Community and Common Market (Caricom).

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