Falkland Islands / Islas Malvinas
Language(s): English (Official)
Area: 12,173 km2
Population: 3,140 (2008)
GDP (PPP): 2005 estimate
Total: $75 million
Per capita: $55,400
This sparsely inhabited dependency consists of a group of islands in the South Atlantic, about 250 mi (402 km) east of the South American mainland. The largest islands are East Falkland and West Falkland. The English captain John Strong made the first recorded landing in the Falklands in 1690. The islands passed among the French, Spanish, and British until 1820, when the Argentine government proclaimed its sovereignty.
In 1998, the Government of the Falkland Islands started a program to encourage building of private houses, the development is known as East Stanley as it developed Stanley to the East. This led to a boom in the housing construction market with many new timber kit houses imported, largely from Scotland. These range from single bedroom bungalows to large 4-5 bedroom houses, the style of cladding and colors vary immensely. Falkland houses are renowned for being brightly painted with immaculately maintained gardens; older houses frequently have intricately carved wooden fascia boards.