Estimate population 258,950
Caribbean Netherlands , formerly known as Netherlands Antilles or Curacao, played a vital part of the Netherlands in the past. Caribbean Netherlands consists of quite a few islands in the West Indies; Curacao, Bonaire, (and formerly) Aruba, St. Martin, St. Eustatius, and Saba. Tourism plays an important role in this regional group of islands. The colonial status of the islands was abolished and domestic autonomy granted by the Dutch government in 1954. Aruba itself was separated from the group in 1986.
In resent years Bonaire, Saint Eustatius and Saba have became special municipalities of the Netherlands, and Curacao and Sint Maarten have become constituent countries alongside Aruba. (Caribbean Netherlands)