The Guyana Portal

Guyana (/ɡˈɑːnə/ (About this soundlisten) or /ɡˈænə/ (About this soundlisten)), officially the Co‑operative Republic of Guyana, is a country on the northern mainland of South America and the capital city is Georgetown. Guyana is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the north, Brazil to the south and southwest, Venezuela to the west, and Suriname to the east. With 215,000 square kilometres (83,000 sq mi), Guyana is the third-smallest sovereign state by area in mainland South America after Uruguay and Suriname; it is also the second-least populous sovereign state in South America after Suriname.

The region known as "the Guianas" consists of the large shield landmass north of the Amazon River and east of the Orinoco River known as the "land of many waters". There are nine indigenous tribes residing in Guyana: the Wai Wai, Macushi, Patamona, Lokono, Kalina, Wapishana, Pemon, Akawaio and Warao. Historically dominated by the Lokono and Kalina tribes, Guyana was colonised by the Dutch before coming under British control in the late 18th century. It was governed as British Guiana, with a mostly plantation-style economy until the 1950s. It gained independence in 1966, and officially became a republic within the Commonwealth of Nations in 1970. The legacy of British rule is reflected in the country's political administration and diverse population, which includes Indian, African, Amerindian, Chinese, Portuguese, other European, and various multiracial groups. In 2017, 41% of the population of Guyana lived below the poverty line.

Guyana is the only South American nation in which English is the official language. The majority of the population, however, speak Guyanese Creole, an English-based creole language, as a first language. Guyana is part of the Anglophone Caribbean. It is part of the mainland Caribbean region maintaining strong cultural, historical, and political ties with other Caribbean countries as well as headquarters for the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). In 2008, the country joined the Union of South American Nations as a founding member. (Full article...)

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The Essequibo River in Guyana

The Essequibo River (Spanish: Río Esequibo originally called by Alonso de Ojeda Río Dulce) is the largest river in Guyana, and the largest river between the Orinoco and Amazon. Rising in the Acarai Mountains near the Brazil–Guyana border, the Essequibo flows to the north for 1,014 kilometres (630 mi) through forest and savanna into the Atlantic Ocean. With a total drainage basin of 150,769 square kilometres (58,212 sq mi) and an average discharge of 4,531–5,650 cubic metres per second (160,000–199,500 cu ft/s).

Territory near the river is argued over by Venezuela and Guyana. Venezuela considers that the natural border according to the divortium aquarum that delimits the eastern margin of that country with the Cooperative Republic of Guyana is "by law", although due to the territorial dispute between the two countries for the sovereignty of Guayana Esequiba, it is "De facto administered and occupied for the most part by the former English colony of British Guiana, present-day Guyana. (Full article...)

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A tractor in a field of rice
A tractor in a field of rice
Credit: Tracey Dos Santos
Rice production on the Guyanese coast of South America

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