Guyana Population: 739,903


« Previous Country | Next Country »   Back to Flag Counter 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. The resulting 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. Donald RAMOTAR was elected president in 2011.

The third-smallest country in South America after Suriname and Uruguay; substantial portions of its western and eastern territories are claimed by Venezuela and Suriname respectively
Location: Northern South America, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Suriname and Venezuela
Geographic coordinates: 5 00 N, 59 00 W
Area: total: 214,969 sq km
land: 196,849 sq km
water: 18,120 sq km

Size comparison: slightly smaller than Idaho
Land Boundaries: total: 2,949 km
border countries: Brazil 1,606 km, Suriname 600 km, Venezuela 743 km
Coastline: 459 km
Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the outer edge of the continental margin
Climate: tropical; hot, humid, moderated by northeast trade winds; two rainy seasons (May to August, November to January)
Terrain: mostly rolling highlands; low coastal plain; savanna in south
Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Mount Roraima 2,835 m
Natural resources: bauxite, gold, diamonds, hardwood timber, shrimp, fish
Land use: arable land: 1.95%
permanent crops: 0.13%
other: 97.92% (2011)
Irrigated land: 1,501 sq km (2003)
Natural hazards: flash flood threat during rainy seasons
Current Environment Issues: water pollution from sewage and agricultural and industrial chemicals; deforestation
International Environment Agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
^Back to Top
Nationality: noun: Guyanese (singular and plural)
adjective: Guyanese
Ethnic groups: East Indian 43.5%, black (African) 30.2%, mixed 16.7%, Amerindian 9.1%, other 0.5% (2002 census)
Languages: English, Amerindian dialects, Creole, Caribbean Hindustani (a dialect of Hindi), Urdu
Religions: Protestant 30.5% (Pentecostal 16.9%, Anglican 6.9%, Seventh-Day Adventist 5%, Methodist 1.7%), Hindu 28.4%, Roman Catholic 8.1%, Jehovah's Witnesses 1.1%, Muslim 7.2%, other Christian 17.7%, other 4.3%, none 4.3% (2002 census)
Population: 739,903 (July 2013 est.) note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected
Age structure: 0-14 years: 30.2% (male 113,724/female 109,643)
15-24 years: 20.7% (male 78,798/female 74,202)
25-54 years: 36.9% (male 138,167/female 134,695)
55-64 years: 7.2% (male 22,772/female 30,358)
65 years and over: 5.1% (male 15,276/female 22,268) (2013 est.)
Dependency ratios: total dependency ratio: 65.3 %
youth dependency ratio: 59.6 %
elderly dependency ratio: 5.7 %
potential support ratio: 17.7 (2013)
Median age: total: 24.5 years
male: 23.7 years
female: 25.3 years (2013 est.)
Population growth rate: -0.21% (2013 est.)
Birth rate: 16.31 births/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Death rate: 7.18 deaths/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Net migration rate: -11.21 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Urbanization: urban population: 29% of total population (2010)
rate of urbanization: 0.5% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Major urban areas - population: GEORGETOWN (capital) 132,000 (2009)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.75 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.69 male(s)/female
total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2013 est.)
Mother's mean age at first birth: 20.8 note: Median age at first birth among women 25-29 (2009 est.)
Maternal mortality rate: 280 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)
Infant mortality rate: total: 34.45 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 38.59 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 30.09 deaths/1,000 live births (2013 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 67.68 years
male: 63.83 years
female: 71.72 years (2013 est.)
Total fertility rate: 2.21 children born/woman (2013 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate: 42.5% (2009)
Health expenditures: 5.4% of GDP (2010)
Physicians density: 0.59 physicians/1,000 population (2009)
Hospital bed density: 2.51 beds/1,000 population (2009)
Drinking water source: improved:
urban: 98% of population
rural: 93% of population
total: 94% of population

urban: 2% of population
rural: 7% of population
total: 6% of population (2010 est.)
Sanitation facility access: improved:
urban: 88% of population
rural: 82% of population
total: 84% of population

urban: 12% of population
rural: 18% of population
total: 16% of population (2010 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 1.2% (2009 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 5,900 (2009 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths: fewer than 500 (2009 est.)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate: 17.2% (2008)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight: 11.1% (2009)
Education expenditures: 3.6% of GDP (2011)
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over has ever attended school
total population: 91.8%
male: 92%
female: 91.6% (2002 Census)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education): total: 11 years
male: 10 years
female: 11 years (2011)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24: total: 46.05%
male: 43.59%
female: 50% (2011)
^Back to Top
Country name: conventional long form: Cooperative Republic of Guyana
conventional short form: Guyana
former: British Guiana
Government type: republic
Capital: name: Georgetown
geographic coordinates: 6 48 N, 58 09 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions: 10 regions; Barima-Waini, Cuyuni-Mazaruni, Demerara-Mahaica, East Berbice-Corentyne, Essequibo Islands-West Demerara, Mahaica-Berbice, Pomeroon-Supenaam, Potaro-Siparuni, Upper Demerara-Berbice, Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo
Independence: 26 May 1966 (from the UK)
National holiday: Republic Day, 23 February (1970)
Constitution: 6 October 1980
Legal system: common law system, based on the English model, with some Roman-Dutch civil law influence
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state: President Donald RAMOTAR (since 03 December 2011);

head of government: Prime Minister Samuel HINDS (since October 1992, except for a period as chief of state after the death of President Cheddi JAGAN on 6 March 1997)

cabinet: Cabinet of Ministers appointed by the president, responsible to the legislature (For more information visit the World Leaders website )

elections: president elected by popular vote as leader of a party list in parliamentary elections, which must be held at least every five years (no term limits); elections last held on 28 November 2011 (next to be called by December 2016); prime minister appointed by the president

election results: Donald RAMOTAR elected president, percent of vote 48.6%
Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly (65 seats; members elected by popular vote, also not more than 4 non-elected non-voting ministers and 2 non-elected non-voting parliamentary secretaries appointed by the president; members to serve five-year terms)

elections: last held on 28 November 2011 (next to be held by November 2016)

election results: percent of vote by party - PPP/C 48.6%, APNU 40%, AFC 10.3%, other 1.1%; seats by party - PPP/C 32, APNU 26, AFC 7
Judicial branch: highest court(s): Supreme Court of Judicature (consists of the Court of Appeal with a chief justice and 3 justices, and the High Court with a chief justice and 10 justices organized into 3- or 5-judge panels) note - in 2009, Guyana ceased final appeals in civil and criminal cases to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (in London), replacing it with the Caribbean Court of Justice, the judicial organ of the Caribbean Community judge selection and term of office: Court of Appeal and High Court chief justices appointed by the president; other judges of both courts appointed by the Judicial Service Commission, a body appointed by the president; judges appointed for life with retirement at age 65

subordinate courts: Land Court; magistrates' courts
Political parties and leaders: Alliance for Change or AFC [Khemraj RAMJATTAN] Justice for All Party [C.N. SHARMA] A Partnership for National Unity or APNU [David GRANGER] People's Progressive Party/Civic or PPP/C [Donald RAMOTAR] Rise, Organize, and Rebuild or ROAR [Ravi DEV] The United Force or TUF [Manzoor NADIR] The Unity Party [Joey JAGAN] Vision Guyana [Peter RAMSAROOP]
Political pressure groups and leaders: Amerindian People's Association Guyana Bar Association Guyana Citizens Initiative Guyana Human Rights Association Guyana Public Service Union or GPSU Private Sector Commission Trades Union Congress
International organization participation: ACP, AOSIS, C, Caricom, CD, CDB, CELAC, FAO, G-77, IADB, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO (correspondent), ITU, LAES, MIGA, NAM, OAS, OIC, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, Petrocaribe, UN, UNASUR, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
National symbol(s): Canje pheasant (hoatzin); jaguar
National anthem: name: "Dear Land of Guyana, of Rivers and Plains"
lyrics/music: Archibald Leonard LUKERL/Robert Cyril Gladstone POTTER

note: adopted 1966
Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Bayney KARRAN
chancery: 2490 Tracy Place NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 265-6900
FAX: [1] (202) 232-1297
consulate(s) general: New York
Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador D. Brent HARDT
embassy: US Embassy, 100 Young and Duke Streets, Kingston, Georgetown
mailing address: P. O. Box 10507, Georgetown; US Embassy, 3170 Georgetown Place, Washington DC 20521-3170
telephone: [592] 225-4900 through 4909
FAX: [592] 225-8497
^Back to Top
The Guyanese economy exhibited moderate economic growth in recent years and is based largely on agriculture and extractive industries. The economy is heavily dependent upon the export of six commodities - sugar, gold, bauxite, shrimp, timber, and rice - which represent nearly 60% of the country's GDP and are highly susceptible to adverse weather conditions and fluctuations in commodity prices. Guyana's entrance into the Caricom Single Market and Economy (CSME) in January 2006 has broadened the country''s export market, primarily in the raw materials sector. Guyana has experienced positive growth almost every year over the past decade. Inflation has been kept under control. Recent years have seen the government''s stock of debt reduced significantly - with external debt now less than half of what it was in the early 1990s. Chronic problems include a shortage of skilled labor and a deficient infrastructure. Despite recent improvements, the government is still juggling a sizable external debt against the urgent need for expanded public investment. In March 2007, the Inter-American Development Bank, Guyana''s principal donor, canceled Guyana''s nearly $470 million debt, equivalent to 21% of GDP, which along with other Highly Indebted Poor Country (HIPC) debt forgiveness brought the debt-to-GDP ratio down from 183% in 2006 to 120% in 2007. Guyana became heavily indebted as a result of the inward-looking, state-led development model pursued in the 1970s and 1980s. Growth slowed in 2009 as a result of the world recession, but picked up in 2010-11, before slowing again in 2012, as a result of a second recession, this focused mainly in Europe. The slowdown in the domestic economy and lower import costs has helped to narrow the country''s current account deficit, despite generally lower earnings from exports.
GDP (purchasing power parity): GDP (purchasing power parity): $6.256 billion (2012 est.) $6.054 billion (2011 est.) $5.741 billion (2010 est.)

note: data are in 2012 US dollars
GDP (official exchange rate): GDP (official exchange rate): $2.788 billion (2012 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: 3.3% (2012 est.) 5.4% (2011 est.) 4.4% (2010 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP): GDP - per capita (PPP): $8,100 (2012 est.) $7,800 (2011 est.) $7,400 (2010 est.)

note: data are in 2012 US dollars
Gross national saving: 10.1% of GDP (2012 est.) 11.7% of GDP (2011 est.) 18.3% of GDP (2010 est.)
GDP - composition, by end use: household consumption: 82.2%
government consumption: 14.5%
investment in fixed capital: 21.6%
investment in inventories: -9.1%
exports of goods and services: 63.5%
imports of goods and services: -72.7% (2012 est.)
GDP - composition, by sector of origin: household consumption: 82.2%
government consumption: 14.5%
investment in fixed capital: 21.6%
investment in inventories: -9.1%
exports of goods and services: 63.5%
imports of goods and services: -72.7% (2012 est.)
Agriculture - products: sugarcane, rice, edible oils; beef, pork, poultry; shrimp, fish
Industries: bauxite, sugar, rice milling, timber, textiles, gold mining
Industrial production growth rate: 6% (2012 est.)
Labor force: 313,100 (2009 est.)
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%
Unemployment rate: 11% (2007)
Population below poverty line: 35% (2006)
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 1.3%
highest 10%: 33.8% (1999)
Distribution of family income - Gini index: 44.6 (2007) 43.2 (1999)
Budget: revenues: $641 million
expenditures: $806.4 million (2012 est.)
Taxes and other revenues: 23% of GDP (2012 est.)
Public debt: 66.1% of GDP (2012 est.) 62.1% of GDP (2011 est.)
Fiscal year: calendar year
Inflation rate (consumer prices): Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3% (2012 est.) 2.6% (2011 est.)
Current account balance: -$324.8 million (2012 est.) -$307.2 million (2011 est.)
Exports: $1.311 billion (2012 est.) $1.182 billion (2011 est.)
Exports - commodities: sugar, gold, bauxite, alumina, rice, shrimp, molasses, rum, timber
Exports - partners: US 29.7%, Canada 27.8%, UK 5.9%, Trinidad and Tobago 4.2%, Jamaica 4.1% (2012)
Imports: $2.065 billion (2012 est.) $1.772 billion (2011 est.)
Imports - commodities: manufactures, machinery, petroleum, food
Imports - partners: Trinidad and Tobago 23.2%, US 21.3%, China 11.8%, Cuba 6.4%, Suriname 4.3% (2012)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $864 million (31 December 2012 est.) $801.8 million (31 December 2011 est.)
Debt - external: $1.846 billion (31 December 2011 est.) $1.234 billion (31 December 2010)
Market value of publicly traded shares: $440.4 million (31 December 2011) $339.8 million (31 December 2010) $287 million (31 December 2009)
Exchange rates: Guyanese dollars (GYD) per US dollar - 204.36 (2012 est.) 204.02 (2011 est.) 203.64 (2010 est.) 203.95 (2009) 203.86 (2008)
^Back to Top
Electricity - production: 817 million kWh (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 152
Electricity - consumption: 683 million kWh (2009 est.)
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity: 343,000 kW (2009 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels: 99.7% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels: 0% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants: 0.3% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources: 0% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Crude oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Crude oil - exports: 0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Crude oil - imports: 0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Crude oil - proved reserves: 0 bbl (1 January 2012 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production: 0 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption: 10,910 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports: 0 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports: 10,680 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas - consumption: 0 cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves: 0 cu m (1 January 2012 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy: 1.52 million Mt (2010 est.)
^Back to Top
Telephones in use: 152,600 (2011)
country comparison to the world: 134
Cellular Phones in use: 528,800 (2011)
Telephone system: general assessment: fair system for long-distance service; microwave radio relay network for trunk lines; many areas still lack fixed-line telephone services

domestic: fixed-line teledensity is about 20 per 100 persons; mobile-cellular teledensity about 70 per 100 persons in 2011

international: country code - 592; tropospheric scatter to Trinidad; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2011)
Broadcast media: government-dominated broadcast media; the National Communications Network (NCN) TV is state-owned; a few private TV stations relay satellite services; the state owns and operates 2 radio stations broadcasting on multiple frequencies capable of reaching the entire country; government limits on licensing of new private radio stations continue to constrain competition in broadcast media (2007)
Internet country code: .gy
Internet hosts: 24,936 (2012)
Internet users: 189,600 (2009)
^Back to Top
Airports: 117 (2013)
country comparison to the world: 50
Airports (paved runways): total 11

1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 1
under 914 m: 8 (2013)
Airports (unpaved runways): total 106

1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 16
under 914 m: 89 (2013)
Roadways: total 7,970 km
paved: 590 km
unpaved: 7,380 km (2000)
Waterways: 330 km (the Berbice, Demerara, and Essequibo rivers are navigable by oceangoing vessels for 150 km, 100 km, and 80 km respectively) (2012)
Merchant marine: total 10

by type: cargo 7, petroleum tanker 2, refrigerated cargo 1

registered in other countries: 3 (Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 2, unknown 1) (2010)
Ports and terminals: major seaport(s): Georgetown
^Back to Top
Military branches: Guyana Defense Force: Army (includes Air Corps, Coast Guard) (2012)
Military service age and obligation: 16 years of age or younger for voluntary military service; no conscription (2013)
Manpower available for military service: males age 16-49: 189,840 (2010 est.)
Manpower fit for military service: males age 16-49: 133,239
females age 16-49: 147,719 (2010 est.)
Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually: male: 8,849
female: 8,460 (2010 est.)
Military expenditures: 1.9% of GDP (2011)
^Back to Top
 Transnational Issues
Disputes - International: all of the area west of the Essequibo River is claimed by Venezuela preventing any discussion of a maritime boundary; Guyana has expressed its intention to join Barbados in asserting claims before UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) that Trinidad and Tobago's maritime boundary with Venezuela extends into their waters; Suriname claims a triangle of land between the New and Kutari/Koetari rivers in a historic dispute over the headwaters of the Courantyne; Guyana seeks arbitration under provisions of the UNCLOS to resolve the long-standing dispute with Suriname over the axis of the territorial sea boundary in potentially oil-rich waters
Illicit drugs: transshipment point for narcotics from South America - primarily Venezuela - to Europe and the US; producer of cannabis; rising money laundering related to drug trafficking and human smuggling
^Back to Top

« Previous Country | Next Country »   Back to Flag Counter Overview

   Source: CIA - The World Factbook

Flag Counter