The Bahamas’ warm sunshine, white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters and friendly people have made it one of the premier tourist destinations in the world, with well over three million visitors each year. Tourism is the country’s number-one industry.
The Bahamas also thrives as a financial centre, with financial services ranking as the second most important industry. Other important industries include construction, agriculture and fishing.
With a democracy dating back to 1729, The Bahamas levies no income taxes. The government’s primary source of revenue comes from import taxes, such as customs duties and stamp taxes. The country has a relatively stable economy and good standard of living and boasts one of the highest per capita incomes in the region. It gained independence from Britain in 1973 but remains a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, with Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as head of state. The Queen’s representative in The Bahamas is the governor general.