|Isles of St. Kilda|
|Conventional short name:|
|Data codes:||SK, SKI|
|Official:||Ingallish (St. Kildan dialect)|
|Government type:||Parliamentary republic|
|Organizations:||United Nations of Vexillium|
Saint Kilda, officially the Isles of Saint Kilda, is an independent republic of extremelly small population, located in an archipelago to the nortwest of Longerath.
Historically settled by peoples from Cruisana and a number of Emethitists and Chungese colonists, the harsh environment of the archipelago prevented massive emmigration. The total population has never exceeded a few thousand people.
On the year 297AP, St. Kilda established colonies in Ras Lanarch, Otago and North Cape. Circa 800 people, not all citizens of St. Kilda, settled in the Ras Lanarch colony, while North Cape was mostly dedicated to scientific exploration and forestry. Otago, on the other hand, saw major investments by the St. Kildan government and an international consortium led by the Bank of St. Kilda, called the Federation of Otagan Industry. The southern part of Otago was made into a tourist haven, while the discovery of great ore reserves pushed the development of the Kalesthesian border area. The Chilango people of southern Otago, related to the Mixtuptecans of San Patricio (then a part of the Mauretanian Empire), were integrated into the St. Kildan colony. Thousands of Mixtuptecans also migrated into Otago. An Otago Parliament (Mod) was established and sent a representative to the Thane in St. Kildaport.
Further inland, the plateau region of Welfenia, with a climate similar to the homeland, was settled by hundreds of St. Kildans and peoples of other nationalities, dedicating themselves to sheepherding. A landed aristocracy soon appeared, with a few St. Kildans owning ranches and farmland which rivaled the home islands in area. These aristocrats and their private militias were behind the Otago Incident: a small private military incursion into neighbouring Wwww (nowadays Uudangwuu) which counted with blessing from the Thane of St. Kilda. The scheme failed as the government of Wwww denounced the invasion to the United Nations of Vexillium and several nations announced economical embargoes to St. Kilda. This precipitated a general strike and the fall of the government in both Otago and St. Kilda proper.
The economical crisis which resulted from the embargoes and the fall of government led to the end of most of St. Kilda's colonial ventures. The Otago colony was privatized through its sale to the Federation of Otagan Industry - from then on known as the Trade and Development Corporation (TDCorp) - on the 3rd of December 298. Meanwhile, Ras Lanarch was ceded to the growing Greater Burovian Realm (with St. Kilda keeping control over a one-square-mile commercial concession) just a few weeks later, on the 1st of January 299.
St. Kilda consists of a group of three islands of volcanic origin and nearby islets, located to the northwest of the continent of Longerath, near the countries of Port Marie, Bomern and Meckeln-Flamlandt. The country and its territorial waters contain a number of active volcanos. The three main islands of St. Kilda are Hirta on the north (also known as Hirta Soay, the location of the main city and capital of St. Kildaport), Boreray on the east and Ben Kilda to the south.
Outside of the main islands, St. Kilda also mantains two overseas territories: the one-square-mile extraterritorial concession at its former colony of Ras Lanarch and the territory of North Cape, on the northernmost tip of mainland Delgamia.
St. Kilda is a republic. Every five years, the local parliament, the 24-person Mod, is elected by direct vote from the entire population. The Mod selects the Gingach from among its members. The Gingach, sometimes translated as Prime Minister, serves as the principal minister to the Thane of St. Kilda and forms a government. The Thane is the Chief of State, elected by and responsible to the voters of St. Kilda for a renewable 12 year term. The Thane appoints judges, diplomatic officials, commissions officers in the uniformed forces and represents the State in all public functions. The approval of the Thane is required for all actions of the Mod.
Another important part of the government is the Baliff, the permanent head of the civil service. The Baliff is responsible for the smooth running of the everyday affairs of the nation and, by direction of the Mod, implementing laws and ordinances adopted by the Mod. The Baliff is appointed by the Thane for an indefinite term of office and may be removed only for specified reasons requiring consent of the Mod, approval of the Thane and approval of the voters.
A good part of the public services, such as education and healthcare, are provided by the government. Other institutions of government include the Ministry of Public Health, the Ministry of Viniculture, St. Kilda National Trust and the Outer Islands Adminstration. Locally, St. Kilda is divided in a number of municipalities - formerly called parishes.
St. Kilda's foreign policy is one of explicit neutrality. Outside of the country, offices of the Bank of St. Kilda provide consular services.
The principal contributor to St. Kildan economy is international banking. St. Kildan banks are noted for discretion, soundness, fair returns, and absolute confidentiality. The Bank of St. Kilda is a major player in the international economy, serving several countries and major and minor corporations. The Bank of St. Kilda has branches in most countries of the world. Despite isolation, secure and constant contact between St. Kildan banks and the rest of Vexillium can be mantained through modern communications technology. This alone permits St. Kilda to project its power across the whole of Vexillium, much farther than its diminute size would otherwise allow.
Low taxes, financial and legal advantages also allow several foreign companies to be registered in St. Kilda - this also makes St. Kilda known, pejoratively, as an offshore tax haven.
Apart from the banking institutions, the government and the military are major employers in St. Kilda. In addition, tourism, fisheries and winemaking are important elements of the St. Kildan economy. Viniculture in St. Kilda is under responsability of the Ministry of Viniculture, which maintains a number of large commercial vineyards in several nations of Vexillium. The ministry mantains a series ofSt. Kilda Grand Kru Gold plantations to produce wine for St. Kildan consumption and for exporting. An unique strain of those grapes produces a very powerful wine, which can be used as ethanol fuel in suitably modified combustion engines and electrical generators. The country encourages the use of this fuel and bans the importing of petroleum-derived fuels for automobiles. The ministry also operates a tanker fleet for transporting wine in bulk.
The heavy volcanic environment allows for geothermal power production. This, in conjunction with solar power technology and ethanol derived from Grand Kru Gold grapes, has almost eliminated the need for importing fossil fuels.
Air travel to St. Kilda is provided by Soay Airways.
St. Kilda has a total population of circa 4.000 (299 estimative), mainly of Cruisanan descent. There are also major groups of Emethitists and Chungese. There is no established church and several faiths have congregations in St. Kildaport.
As per its size, St. Kilda mantains minimal military forces. Being a non-beligerent and permanently neutral country, no regular ground forces are supported. The Coast Guard provides maritime patrol as well as airborne search and rescue. The St. Kilda Regiment is a part-time force numbering with a full-time training element at St. Kildaport, numbering 250 men and women. The St. Kilda Engineers are organized with a remit to provide surveys, public works, communications and utilities.
The St. Kilda Constabulary functions as the civil and criminal police on Hirta Island, with detachments at North Cape and the Ras Lanarch Concession. In the other territories, the Coast Guard provides police services. The volunteer Fire Brigade is part of the Constabulary.
St. Kilda has a complex set of national and local flags. See: Flags of Saint Kilda.