Located at the heart of world trade routes in the South Western Caribbean Aruba enjoys a healthy climate, making it a year-round paradise for residents and visitors alike. Aruba's capital, Oranjestad was built around Fort Zoutman shortly after it was constructed in 1796. Initially the town had no official name, being known only as the town on the Bay of Horses (Paardenbaai in Dutch) - a fitting designation for the place from which many native-bred and raised horses left for neighboring islands. Oranjestad houses the only cruise port on the island which began welcoming cruise tourists in the early 1950's. The Aruba Ports Authority, has announced the undertaking of a US$ 62 Million Dollar Container Port Development project which involves moving the commercial port to the port of Barcadera. In the coming two years Aruba's cruise port will be able to undergo the necessary development to accommodate more cruise lines and cruise visitors. Aruba is characterized by an open economy which, because of its small scale, is dependent upon imports from and exports to other countries. The main economic activities in Aruba are tourism, banking and transportation. Aruba is a safe, stable and friendly Caribbean island with Dutch roots. The autonomous island functions as an independent entity within the Kingdom of the Netherlands and our government is founded on democratic principles.