Guyana



Official Country Name
Guyana

Guyana Overview
Originally a Dutch colony in the 17th century, by 1815 Guyana had become a British possession. The abolition of slavery led to black settlement of urban areas and the importation of indentured servants from India to work the sugar plantations. This ethnocultural divide has persisted and has led to turbulent politics. Guyana achieved independence from the UK in 1966, and since then it has been ruled mostly by socialist-oriented governments. In 1992, Cheddi JAGAN was elected president in what is considered the country's first free and fair election since independence. After his death five years later, his wife, Janet JAGAN, became president but resigned in 1999 due to poor health. Her successor, Bharrat JAGDEO, was reelected in 2001 and again in 2006.

Guyana Economy
The Guyanese economy exhibited moderate economic growth in 2001-02, based on expansion in the agricultural and mining sectors, a more favorable atmosphere for business initiatives, a more realistic exchange rate, fairly low inflation, and the continued support of international organizations. Chronic problems include a shortage of skilled labor and a deficient infrastructure. The government is juggling a sizable external debt against the urgent need for expanded public investment. The InterAmerican Development Bank in November 2006 canceled Guyana's nearly $400 million debt with the Bank. The bauxite mining sector should benefit in the near term from restructuring and partial privatization. Export earnings from agriculture and mining have fallen sharply, while the import bill has risen, driven by higher energy prices. Guyana's entrance into the Caricom Single Market and Economy (CSME) in January 2006 will broaden the country's export market, primarily in the raw materials sector.

Guyana Location
Guyana is located in Northern South America, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Suriname and Venezuela

Region
Guyana is located in South America

Guyana Population
Guyana has population of 767,245 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS

Guyana Climate
Guyana has tropical; hot, humid, moderated by northeast trade winds; two rainy seasons (May to August, November to January)

Guyana Terrain
mostly rolling highlands; low coastal plain; savanna in south

Guyana Natural Resources
bauxite, gold, diamonds, hardwood timber, shrimp, fish

Ethnic Groups in Guyana
Guyana has the following ethnic groups - East Indian 50%, black 36%, Amerindian 7%, white, Chinese, and mixed 7%

Guyana Religions
Christian 50%, Hindu 35%, Muslim 10%, other 5%

Guyana Languages
English, Amerindian dialects, Creole, Hindi, Urdu

Guyana Capital
Guyana capital is Georgetown

Guyana Currency
Guyana currency is Guyanese dollar

Map of Guyana