Careers, Jobs and Education Resources for: Virgin Islands

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During the 17th century, the archipelago was divided into two territorial units, one English and the other Danish. Sugarcane, produced by slave labor, drove the islands' economy during the 18th and early 19th centuries. In 1917, the US purchased the Danish portion, which had been in economic decline since the abolition of slavery in 1848. (from the CIA)


Economic Overview

Tourism is the primary economic activity, accounting for 80% of gdp and employment. the islands hosted 2.6 million visitors in 2005. the manufacturing sector consists of petroleum refining, textiles, electronics, pharmaceuticals, and watch assembly. one of the world's largest petroleum refineries is at saint croix. the agricultural sector is small, with most food being imported. international business and financial services are small but growing components of the economy. the islands are vulnerable to substantial damage from storms. the government is working to improve fiscal discipline, to support construction projects in the private sector, to expand tourist facilities, to reduce crime, and to protect the environment.

Environmental Issues

Lack of natural freshwater resources

Government Type



109,840 (july 2008 est.)


Caribbean, islands between the caribbean sea and the north atlantic ocean, east of puerto rico


Total: 1,910 sq km land: 346 sq km water: 1,564 sq km

Twice the size of washington, dc

Country Aliases

Conventional long form: united states virgin islands conventional short form: virgin islands former: danish west indies abbreviation: usvi


Name: charlotte amalie geographic coordinates: 18 21 n, 64 56 w time difference: utc-4 (1 hour ahead of washington, dc during standard time)

International Disputes


Sources: Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)

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