The Bahamas is an archipelagic state within the Lucayan Archipelago. It consists of more than 700 islands, cays, and islets in the Atlantic Ocean, and is located north of Cuba and Hispaniola (Haiti and the Dominican Republic), northwest of the Turks and Caicos Islands, southeast of the United States state of Florida, and east of the Florida Keys. The capital is Nassau on the island of New Providence. The designation of "the Bahamas" can refer either to the country or to the larger island chain that it shares with the Turks and Caicos Islands.
Subsequently, the Bahamas became a haven for freed African slaves; the Royal Navy resettled Africans there liberated from illegal slave ships, American slaves and Seminoles escaped here from Florida, and the government freed American slaves carried on United States domestic ships that had reached the Bahamas due to weather. Today, Afro-Bahamians make up nearly 90% of the population.
The Bahamas became an independent Commonwealth country in 1973, retaining the British monarch. In terms of gross domestic product per capita, The Bahamas is one of the richest countries in the Americas (following the United States and Canada), with an economy based on tourism and finance.