The Netherlands Antilles, previously known as the Netherlands West Indies or Dutch Antilles/West Indies, is part of the Lesser Antilles and consists of two groups of islands in the Caribbean Sea: Curaçao and Bonaire, just off the Venezuelan coast, and Sint Eustatius, Saba and Sint Maarten, located southeast of the Virgin Islands. The islands form an autonomous part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The islands' economy depends mostly upon tourism, international financial services, international commerce and shipping and petroleum.
The Netherlands Antilles was scheduled to be dissolved as a unified political entity on 15 December 2008, so that the five constituent islands will attain new constitutional statuses within the Kingdom of the Netherlands. This dissolution is still planned, but has been postponed to an indefinite future date.
Wording courtesy of http://www.wikipedia.org/
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