Country Office Contacts
Guyana +592 223 5036

87 Carmichael Street South Cummingsburg, Georgetown
gmcdaniel@worldbank.org

USA +1 202 458-2656

1818 H Street NW, Washington, DC 20433
cchapoy@worldbank.org

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Guyana Overview

Guyana, the third smallest country in South America, is a fast growing economy rich in natural resources, biodiversity, and pristine forests that cover 80 percent of the country. It is a low-lying country with 90 percent of the population living in the narrow coastal plain, largely below sea level.

Guyana is rapidly emerging as one of the countries with the highest economic growth rates in Latin America. Economic growth between 2000 and 2007 averaged slightly over 2 percent, below the regional average of about 3.7 percent. Growth in the economy has accelerated significantly since then averaging over 4 percent per annum. Guyana weathered the effects of the recent global financial crisis very well compared to other Caribbean countries or the rest of the Latin American and Caribbean region.

While most economies in the region contracted during the crisis years (2008-2009), the Guyanese economy recorded an average growth of 4 percent. The macroeconomic outlook is positive for 2013 and growth is projected at 4.8 percent in 2014. Inflation is to remain at around 3.5 percent. Growth is  driven primarily by continued expansion in the extractive, agriculture, manufacturing and construction sectors. The medium-term economic prospect is positive and is anchored by the Government’s commitment to sound policies and reforms which emphasizes shared prosperity and poverty reduction.

Over 80 percent of Guyana’s  land area is covered by forest.  To protect this national asset and to find ways to utilize its forests as a means to generate revenue and propel economic development, Guyana’s Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) is an essential part of its economic development plan.  The Government of Guyana  seeks to protect and maintain its forests  to reduce global carbon emissions, and at the same time attract resources for the country to grow and develop

 

The Country Assistance Strategy (2009-2012), was endorsed by the Bank’s Board of Executive Directors in May 2009. The CAS comprises a program of lending, technical assistance and analytical work to support the Government’s objective of accelerating and sustaining growth around two main areas of support:

  • Strengthening environmental resilience and sustainability, which focuses on helping the country establish pilot forest areas that are protected and sustainably managed by local communities, and strengthening the country's ability to reduce its exposure to natural disasters and global climate risk.

  • Improving education quality and social safety nets, notably via teacher training reform and better service delivery, while bolstering the Government's efforts to deliver an enhanced social protection program.

Financing to Guyana is channeled through the International Development Association (IDA), the World Bank’s fund  providing interest-free loans and grants to low-income countries, and through a series of trust funds managed by the Bank.

The World Bank Group is discussing its future engagement with the government. The current two areas of support are likely to be extended.

RESULTS

  • The Guyana REDD+ Investment Fund (GRIF) established in 2010 between Norway and Guyana, supports the Government’s implementation of the country’s Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS). The GRIF will provide up to US$250 million to finance projects in the LCDS. The members of the Steering Committee are the Governments of Guyana and Norway, and the World Bank (both as a trustee for the GRIF and as a partner entity with the IDB and the UN).
  • The supervision of non-bank financial institutions was strengthened.
  • IFC invested in Guyana Goldfields, a Canadian company present in Guyana since the mid-1990s. This investment helped produce about 80 percent of Guyana's declared gold production for 2012.


RELATED

LENDING

Guyana: Commitments by Fiscal Year (in millions of dollars)*

*Amounts include IBRD and IDA commitments

Around The Bank Group

Find out what the Bank Group's branches are doing in Guyana.