Guyana’s economy, with a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of $3.63 billion, a growth rate of 4.1 per cent in 2018 and 4.6 per cent in 2019, is expected to further grow by 33.5 per cent and 22.9 per cent in 2020 and 2021 respectively.
This is according to the NASDAQ Stock Market, which is an American stock exchange. It is the second-largest stock exchange in the world by market capitalisation, behind only the New York Stock Exchange located in the same city.
NASDAQ said, with a per-capita income of $5,194, Guyana is a middle-income country and is covered by dense forest. It is home to fertile agricultural lands and abundant natural resources. Gold, bauxite, sugar, rice, timber and shrimp are among its leading exports.
Back in 2000, the U.S. Geological Survey identified the Guyana-Suriname Basin as the second highest resource potential among unexplored oil basins in the world.
ExxonMobil (U.S.), Esso (U.S.), Hess, Repsol (Spain), Anadarko (U.S.), Total (France), Tullow Oil (UK), and CGX Energy (Canada) have been a part of exploration and drilling activities over the years.
ExxonMobil Guyana has made 13 discoveries since 2015 and plans to begin producing up to 120,000 barrels of oil per day from the Liza Phase One development in early 2020. Guyana is projected to be among the world’s largest per-capita oil producers by 2025.
Early this year, the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) projected a 4.6 per cent growth rate for Guyana this year even as it updated its growth projections on economic activity for this year for the Region’s countries.
In the updated projections, ECLAC slightly lowers its estimate for the regional average to 1.3 per cent compared with the 1.7 per cent foreseen in December 2018, when the institution released its annual report ‘Preliminary Overview of the Economies of Latin America and the Caribbean 2018’.
Recently, in an interview with this newspaper, Finance Minister, Winston Jordan, said that, despite the political fallout following the no-confidence motion, there has been no disruption to the economy which grew by 4.1 per cent last year.
Describing the nation’s economic performance as “solid”, Minister Jordan said the sectors responsible for the “better than expected performance” were sugar, livestock, forestry, gold, diamonds and the wholesale and retail trades. The private sector has been saying that due to “uncertainties” economic activities have slowed. It (the private sector) however, has not produced actual data and method used to arrive at the claims.
Last year’s growth came on the heels of a less than three per cent GDP growth rate in 2017 and bettered the 3.4 per cent growth which was initially projected in November of 2018. The latter was based on figures at hand and projections, explained the minister.
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