The Fortunes of Bauxite – Part 5 – Summary of Bauxite


 By Dmitri Allicock – for Guyanese Online                

Dmitri Allicock

The influence of this industry on the people of Upper Demerara and Guyana as a whole was extremely significant. An entire town revolved around this industry and was ultimately tied to its success or failure.

Bauxite is not gone. The bauxite resources of Guyana are still being mapped and the ore mining potentials are still, to some extent, not fully known. What has changed is that the bauxite industry has drastically declined from what it was.

I can hardly write about bauxite and Linden and skip over some significant events that occurred with the Bauxite Industry and Guyana. Guyana’s aspiration to join the third world family  of independent nations was successful with independence from Britain in 1966. The journey to political maturity was complex and difficult.   

We would sadly spiral down into that tragic abyss that is so typical of most. Guyana entered a storming night of inner struggles and serious mistakes that lead to a disastrous decline all over Guyana including the Bauxite industry.


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  • Cyril Balkaran  On May 24, 2012 at 6:14 am

    History has also recorded that the DEMBA was granted 25 years of tax concessions for their massive investments by the then Colonial Government and that this issue of Nationalization of the Commanding Heights of the Economy and the alleged Communist government of Cheddi Jagan invited the wrath of the Canadians and Americans as owners of the Demba and Reynolds Metal of Berbice. It started by the witholding of Independence by Britain until the Regime that frightened the Investors through their published Political Manifestos and via their actions in government that the darkest history stories began to be formulated and Guiana was no more the same. It was in 1971 that the eventual Nationalization of the Bauxite Industry took effect. The world markets declined and so too was the price for our high calcined bauxite ores.
    LFSB is credited for executing the plan that cost Cheddi the Government and Independence for Guyana. That 1971, Hazard of the Parliament would gave the rest where an emotional Jagan gave Forbes the Critical Support he wanted for the completion of the Process of Nationalization of that Bauxite Industry, 65 miles up the Demerara River basin.

  • Cyril Balkaran  On May 24, 2012 at 6:25 am

    Dimitry Allicock deserves every credit for these finely researched articles on the Demba Bauxite Industry and I can fell his modesty when he writes” Guyana entered a storming night of inner struggles and serious mistakes that led to a disastrous decline everywhere” Today the country and its population are paying the price fo those serious mistakes. Keep the debate alive my brother, for one day posterity shall aplaud you and others for not being the silent witness to the unfolding drama of the human mind at its best!

  • DMITRI ALLICOCK  On May 24, 2012 at 10:24 am

    Far too much politics and drama with very real consequences…as we look towards hopefully a brighter future, thank you Mr. Balkaran for your kind and well said words.
    Best regards,

  • Cyril Balkaran  On May 24, 2012 at 12:26 pm

    In another TWO days time, Guyana would have been observing its 46th year as an Independent Nation when it did join the league of Free nations on the midnight hour of 26th May 1966! The Maturity we experienced as we grow into nationhood, and development on all fronts as we continue to bear the pains of growth,maturity, self respect, tolerance for one another and further economic development must be the hallmarks of our achievements to observe and celebrate! We, as a nation entering its 47th year of birth with efforts at managing our political, cultural, socio economic, culture and religious achievements in our Multi Ethnic and Plural country, Let us all try to put the past behind us and as true citizens and lovers of Guyana strive continuously to build and create our Nation building tasks so that when History of the next 50 years would have been written in favour of Guyana and all its people, we would stand tall for making the right decisions based on consensus and fair play rather than on the winner takes it all syndrome! Have a happy Independence day folks! Guyana we love you always!

  • Rosaliene Bacchus  On May 24, 2012 at 3:48 pm

    Beautiful photo of the Upper Demerara River at dawn. A new day on our journey to a Guyana for all its peoples.

    • DMITRI ALLICOCK  On May 24, 2012 at 5:21 pm

      Thanks Rosaliene,
      A picture is worth a thousand words indeed.
      “There is hope within each sunrise
      Hope to face the brand new day
      Gone are yesterday’s demises
      Hope replaces my dismay”
      Best regards, {I read and love all your postings}

  • Clyde Duncan  On May 26, 2012 at 2:27 am

    An Interesting, Educational and Inspiring piece on the economic soul of Guyana! It is a spiritual thing you shared, I believe. Thank You, Dmitri!

  • Dmitri Allicock  On June 8, 2013 at 11:52 am

    A boat ride of time-travel which offer just a glimpse into the lives of our ancestors is not unlike a text or message from the past and, for a brief moment, their immortal spirit lives once more. A special opportunity revealed in the realization that our fragile existence might be made just in little more secured by our appreciation of them.

    Click to access peg-leg-george-of-sebacabra-rev1.pdf

  • Dmitri Allicock  On June 8, 2013 at 11:53 am

    Of Akyma-De Maria Elisabeth
    By Dmitri Allicock
    “One Boviander family on the Demerara River lived at a lovely placed called Akyma, on a little Hill, rising about thirty feet from the river and crowned with feathery bamboos and tall cucurite and manicole palms. Their name was Bremner and their immediate ancestor was a Dutchman, who had been the post-holder at the Government post of Sebacabra, a hill on the right bank of the river about ninety miles from Georgetown.” Henry Kirke 1870.
    Read more:

  • Mike  On February 26, 2014 at 6:55 am

    hi Dmitri i wonder if you can help i worked on a ship called ESSEX it was moored up at Mackenzie waiting to load. she broke her stern mooring ropes and went sideways across the river does anyone have any information or photos, it was in 1959.
    it was my fault i had been ashore had to many beers and fell asleep on watch, i still remember. it was 12.00 4.00 watch, hope someone can help, regards mike

    • Dmitri Allicock  On February 27, 2014 at 1:24 am

      Hi Mike, I wasn’t around as yet but will check with the few remaining old heads left. Guyanese liquor does pack a punch. Nice to hear from you and stay in touch, Dmitri

      • Mike  On February 27, 2014 at 8:34 am

        hi Dmitri thanks for the reply , wasent there a local paper at that time ,maybe something in the archives, have a great day

  • Dmitri Allicock  On February 27, 2014 at 9:28 am

    Yes Mike, “The Mackenzie Miner” followed by “The Demba Digest.” It would have been recorded there. The question is how to access them.

  • Ron. Persaud  On February 27, 2014 at 9:00 pm

    I was quite surprised (almost astonished) to read that the recycling of aluminium products has reached a stage of almost equilibrium with consumption of the metal; to the extent that bauxite mining might become unnecessary in the future.
    I thought about Guyana. First sugar. Now bauxite.

  • Dmitri Allicock  On February 28, 2014 at 6:21 pm

    In 2009, Australia was the top producer of bauxite with almost one-third of the world’s production, followed by China, Brazil, India, and Guinea. Although aluminium demand is rapidly increasing, known reserves of its bauxite ore are sufficient to meet the worldwide demands for aluminium for many centuries. Increased aluminium recycling, which has the advantage of lowering the cost in electric power in producing aluminium, will considerably extend the world’s bauxite reserves.
    Numbers for 2010’s total proven bauxite reserves x1,000 tonne

    Country Mine production Reserves Reserve base
    2010 2011 (est.)
    17,400 18,000 7,400,000 8,600,000
    68,400 67,000 6,200,000 7,900,000
    80 80 2,100,000 5,400,000
    8,540 10,200 2,000,000 2,500,000
    28,100 31,000 3,600,000 2,500,000
    1,760 2,000 850,000 900,000
    18,000 20,000 900,000 1,400,000
    44,000 46,000 830,000 2,300,000
    2,100 2,100 600,000 650,000
    — 500[3]
    — —
    4,000 5,000 580,000 600,000
    Sierra Leone
    1,090 1,700 180,000 ?
    5,310 5,400 160,000 450,000
    2,500 4,500 320,000 350,000
    5,480 5,800 200,000 250,000
    United States
    N/A 20,000 40,000
    Other countries 2,630 2,600 3,300,000 3,800,000
    World total (rounded) 209,000 220,000 29,000,000 38,000,000
    In November 2010, Nguyen Tan Dung, the prime minister of Vietnam, announced that Vietnam’s bauxite reserves might total 11000Mt; this would be the largest in the world.

  • Ron. Persaud  On February 28, 2014 at 9:58 pm

    As I learned in 4th. standard, Guyana had the richest bauxite ore outside of Canada. Does this still hold true?
    P.S. I learned much in the three years I spent in Std. IV.

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