Guyana Population: 735,909


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Originally a Dutch colony in the 17th century, by 1815 Guyana had become a British possession. The abolition of slavery led to settlement of urban areas by former slaves 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. Early elections held in May 2015 resulted in the replacement of President Donald RAMOTAR by David GRANGER.

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: 2,933 km border countries (3): Brazil 1,308 km, Suriname 836 km, Venezuela 789 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:
Natural resources: bauxite, gold, diamonds, hardwood timber, shrimp, fish
Land use: agricultural land: 8.4% arable land 2.1%; permanent crops 0.1%; permanent pasture 6.2% forest: 77.4%
other: 14.2% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land: 1,430 sq km (2012)
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
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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% (includes Portuguese, Chinese, white) (2002 est.)
Languages: English (official), Guyanese Creole, Amerindian languages (including Caribbean and Arawak languages), Indian languages (including Caribbean Hindustani, a dialect of Hindi), Chinese (2014 est.)
Religions: Protestant 30.5% (Pentecostal 16.9%, Anglican 6.9%, Seventh Day Adventist 5%, Methodist 1.7%), Hindu 28.4%, Roman Catholic 8.1%, Muslim 7.2%, Jehovah's Witness 1.1%, other Christian 17.7%, other 1.9%, none 4.3%, unspecified 0.9% (2002 est.)
Population: 735,909 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 (July 2016 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 27.12% (male 101,637/female 97,970)
15-24 years: 21.46% (male 81,017/female 76,912)
25-54 years: 37.73% (male 145,003/female 132,640)
55-64 years: 7.9% (male 26,195/female 31,924)
65 years and over: 5.79% (male 17,585/female 25,026) (2016 est.)
Dependency ratios: total dependency ratio: 51.1%
youth dependency ratio: 43.5%
elderly dependency ratio: 7.6%
potential support ratio: 13.2% (2015 est.)
Median age: total: 25.8 years
male: 25.5 years
female: 26.2 years (2016 est.)
Population growth rate: 0.17% (2016 est.)
Birth rate: 15.5 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Death rate: 7.4 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Net migration rate: -6.4 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Urbanization: urban population: 28.6% of total population (2015)
rate of urbanization: 0.76% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Major urban areas - population: GEORGETOWN (capital) 124,000 (2014)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.09 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.82 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.71 male(s)/female
total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2016 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: 229 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
Infant mortality rate: total: 31.5 deaths/1,000 live births male: 35.4 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 27.3 deaths/1,000 live births (2016 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 68.4 years male: 65.4 years
female: 71.5 years (2016 est.)
Total fertility rate: 2.04 children born/woman (2016 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate: 42.5% (2009)
Health expenditures: 5.2% of GDP (2014)
Physicians density: 0.21 physicians/1,000 population (2010)
Hospital bed density: 2 beds/1,000 population (2009)
Drinking water source: improved:
urban: 98.2% of population
rural: 98.3% of population
total: 98.3% of population

urban: 1.8% of population
rural: 1.7% of population
total: 1.7% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility access: improved:
urban: 87.9% of population
rural: 82% of population
total: 83.7% of population

urban: 12.1% of population
rural: 18% of population
total: 16.3% of population (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 1.5% (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 7,800 (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths: 100 (2015 est.)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate: 21.9% (2014)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight: 8.5% (2014)
Education expenditures: 3.2% of GDP (2012)
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over has ever attended school
total population: 88.5%
male: 87.2%
female: 89.8% (2015 est.)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education): total: 10 years male: 10 years
female: 10 years (2012)
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Country name: conventional long form: Cooperative Republic of Guyana
conventional short form: Guyana
former: British Guiana
etymology: the name is derived from Guiana, the original name for the region that included British Guiana, Dutch Guiana, and French Guiana; ultimately the word is derived from an indigenous Amerindian language and means "land of many waters" (referring to the area's multitude of rivers and streams)
Government type: parliamentary 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: several previous; latest promulgated 6 October 1980; amended many times, last in 2009; note - in 2015, Guinea's High Court reversed the constitutional two-term presidential limit (2016)
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 David GRANGER (since 16 May 2015)

head of government: Prime Minister Moses NAGAMOOTOO (since 20 May 2015)

cabinet: Cabinet of Ministers appointed by the president, responsible to the National Assembly elections/appointments: president indirectly elected by the National Assembly from party lists to serve a 5-year term (no term limits); election last held on 11 May 2015 (next to be held in 2020); prime minister appointed by the president

election results: David GRANGER (APNU-AFC) elected president by National Assembly; percent of vote - 50.3%
Legislative branch: description: unicameral National Assembly (65 seats; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies and a single nationwide constituency by proportional representation vote; members serve 5-year terms)

elections: last held on 11 May 2015 (next to be held by May 2020)

election results: percent of vote by party - APNU 50.3%, PPP/C 49.19%, other 0.51%; seats by party - APNU 33, PPP/C 32
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: A Partnership for National Unity or APNU [David A. GRANGER] Alliance for Change or AFC [Khemraj RAMJATTAN] Justice for All Party [C.N. SHARMA] 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, ICCt, 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, Victoria Regia water lily; national colors: red, yellow, green, black, white
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 (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Lesley DOWRIDGE-COLLINS (since 22 July 2016)
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 Perry L. HOLLOWAY (since 2 October 2015)
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
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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. Much of Guyana's growth in recent years has come from a surge in gold production in response to global prices, although downward trends in gold prices may threaten future growth. In 2014, production of sugar dropped to a 24-year low. Guyana's entrance into the Caricom Single Market and Economy 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. 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 debt forgiveness, brought the debt-to-GDP ratio down from 183% in 2006 to 67% in 2015. Guyana had become heavily indebted as a result of the inward-looking, state-led development model pursued in the 1970s and 1980s. Chronic problems include a shortage of skilled labor and a deficient infrastructure.
GDP (purchasing power parity): GDP (purchasing power parity): $6.093 billion (2016 est.) $5.857 billion (2015 est.) $5.675 billion (2014 est.)

note: data are in 2016 dollars
GDP (official exchange rate): GDP (official exchange rate): $3.456 billion (2015 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: 4% (2016 est.) 3.2% (2015 est.) 3.8% (2014 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP): GDP - per capita (PPP): $7,900 (2016 est.) $7,600 (2015 est.) $7,400 (2014 est.)

note: data are in 2016 dollars
Gross national saving: 18.6% of GDP (2016 est.) 8.1% of GDP (2015 est.) 5.6% of GDP (2014 est.)
GDP - composition, by end use: household consumption: 82.2%
government consumption: 19.7%
investment in fixed capital: 25.9%
investment in inventories: 0%
exports of goods and services: 47.9%
imports of goods and services: -75.7% (2016 est.)
GDP - composition, by sector of origin: household consumption: 82.2%
government consumption: 19.7%
investment in fixed capital: 25.9%
investment in inventories: 0%
exports of goods and services: 47.9%
imports of goods and services: -75.7% (2016 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: 12% (2016 est.)
Labor force: 313,800 (2013 est.)
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%
Unemployment rate: 11.1% (2013) 11.3% (2012)
Population below poverty line: 35% (2006 est.)
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: $899.8 million
expenditures: $1.036 billion (2016 est.)
Taxes and other revenues: 26% of GDP (2016 est.)
Public debt: 53.1% of GDP (2016 est.) 48.8% of GDP (2015 est.)
Fiscal year: calendar year
Inflation rate (consumer prices): Inflation rate (consumer prices): 0.8% (2016 est.) -0.9% (2015 est.)
Current account balance: $72 million (2016 est.) -$181 million (2015 est.)
Exports: $1.15 billion (2016 est.) $1.17 billion (2015 est.)
Exports - commodities: sugar, gold, bauxite, alumina, rice, shrimp, molasses, rum, timber
Exports - partners: US 33.5%, Canada 17.9%, UK 6.7%, Ukraine 4.3%, Jamaica 4% (2015)
Imports: $1.44 billion (2016 est.) $1.475 billion (2015 est.)
Imports - commodities: manufactures, machinery, petroleum, food
Imports - partners: US 24.6%, Trinidad and Tobago 24.1%, China 10.8%, Suriname 9.5% (2015)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $547.7 million (31 December 2016 est.) $600.9 million (31 December 2015 est.)
Debt - external: $2.303 billion (31 December 2013 est.) $1.974 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares: $610.9 million (31 December 2012 est.) $440.4 million (31 December 2011 est.) $339.8 million (31 December 2010 est.)
Exchange rates: Guyanese dollars (GYD) per US dollar - 206.6 (2016 est.) 206.5 (2015 est.) 206.5 (2014 est.) 206.45 (2013 est.) 204.36 (2012 est.)
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Electricity - production: 1 billion kWh (2014 est.)
Electricity - consumption: 800 million kWh (2014 est.)
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2013 est.)
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2013 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity: 400,000 kW (2014 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels: 96.1% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels: 0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants: 0.3% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources: 3.6% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
Crude oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Crude oil - exports: 0 bbl/day (2013 est.)
Crude oil - imports: 0 bbl/day (2013 est.)
Crude oil - proved reserves: 0 bbl (1 January 2016 es)
Refined petroleum products - production: 0 bbl/day (2013 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption: 13,000 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports: 0 bbl/day (2013 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports: 13,250 bbl/day (2013 est.)
Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2013 est.)
Natural gas - consumption: 0 cu m (2013 est.)
Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2013 est.)
Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2013 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves: 0 cu m (1 January 2014 es)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy: 1.7 million Mt (2013 est.)
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Cellular Phones in use: total: 543,000 subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 74 (July 2015 est.)
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 75 per 100 persons

international: country code - 592; tropospheric scatter to Trinidad; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2015)
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 th (2007)
Internet country code: .gy
Internet users: total: 281,000 percent of population: 38.2% (July 2015 est.)
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Airports: 117 (2013)
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 (2001)
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
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Military branches: Guyana Defense Force: Army (includes Air Corps, Coast Guard) (2012)
Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age or older for voluntary military service; no conscription (2014)
Military expenditures: 1.09% of GDP (2012) 1.17% of GDP (2011) 1.09% of GDP (2010)
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 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
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