World Bank ranks Guyana second poorest in Caricom- per capita

On basis of per capita income…World Bank ranks Guyana second poorest in Caricom

DECEMBER 30, 2013 · – Stabroek News  · Stabroek News COMMENTS

With a Gross National Income (GNI) of just US$3, 410 per capita, the World Bank in its 2014 World Development Report rated Guyana among the least wealthy in CARICOM.

This figure is in stark contrast to that of Guyana’s fellow CARICOM country, The Bahamas, whose  GNI is recorded as US$21,280 per capita, making it the wealthiest CARICOM country.

According to the World Bank, Guyana is the second poorest country in Caricom but far ahead of Haiti, which has a GNI of US$760 per capita. “For 2012, the economy expanded by 3.7% down from 4.5% in 2011 and 4.4% in 2010.” The Bank however noted the economy’s expansion in 2013 which it attributed to increased activity in rice and gold production, as well as improvement in the manufacturing sector.  

The Bahamas’s economic prosperity, on the other hand, is attributed mostly to its vast tourism sector which accounts for over 60% of the Bahamian Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and creates jobs for more than fifty percent of the country’s workforce.

The island’s financial services sector is the second most vibrant and accounts for about 15% of its GDP.

Guyana was also outperformed by Trinidad and Tobago which registered a GNI of US$14,400 per capita. In fact, the twin-island state has been doing so well that the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in 2011 removed it from its list of developing countries.

The country’s economy is driven by its petroleum industry, although its manufacturing and tourism sectors are also very important.

St Kitts and Nevis also did well, registering a GNI of US$13,330 per capita. Tourism and manufacturing are the main drivers behind the twin-island federation’s development, after sugar cultivation, owing to growing production costs and falling world market prices, was reduced. The tourism sector has been doing particularly well, and the island has seen tourist arrivals expand from 379,473 in 2007 to 587,479 in 2009.

It is also tourism which helped Antigua and Barbuda attain its US$12,640 GNI per capita. The country’s tourism sector accounts for more than half of the GDP, although the growing medical schools and its students make very large contributions to the economy.

Guyana’s CARICOM and South American neighbour Suriname achieved a GNI of US$8,480 per capita although its economy fell on hard times during the 1990’s. The country’s ability to beat back economic hardships and register such a relatively high GNI is a result of government initiatives to diversify the economy, and decrease dependence on Dutch financial assistance.

Bauxite mining couple with exploration and exploitation of oil contributes substantially to the country’s GDP, although agriculture and ecotourism are important components.

Ranking closer to Guyana was Jamaica and Dominica with GNIs of US$5,140 and US$6,460 per capita respectively. About 50% of Jamaica’s economy is built on income generated by tourism-related services. At the same time, Jamaica’s economy is a fair mixture of state enterprises and private businesses, while agriculture, financial and insurance services, manufacturing and mining play integral roles in the country’s economy.

Meanwhile, Dominica, whose economy historically depended largely upon gains from its banana and other agricultural endeavours, came back from the brink of a financial crisis in 2003 and 2004 to experience growth levels of 3.5 percent and 4.0 percent in 2005 and 2006 respectively.

Growth in 2006 in particular, was said to be the fruit of macroeconomic reforms pursued by government, which saw new ground gained in construction, tourism, offshore services and some sectors of the country’s banana industry.

More information:  World Bank 2014 –Appendixes Data

Editor’s Note:  Barbados is not mentioned in this report. Last year (2013) its per capita income was US$16,191  as reported by the World Bank.  It per capita income is rated second after the Bahamas for the CARICOM countries.

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  • Cliff Thomas  On 01/07/2014 at 6:57 pm

    This might be so but Guyana is welthier than many of her Caricom countries and many others outside of Caricom such as some of the African States etc.

  • Thinker  On 01/08/2014 at 8:30 am

    Yeah, Misery loves company.

  • Malcolm Heydorn  On 01/09/2014 at 3:17 am

    Why does the Guyanese “brain” slumber in its inability to concede, that both the opposition and ruling parties, past and present, will eventually be the major factors in the total demise of this land. The time for platitudes is over. Guyanese who live abroad, are mostly resolute that this land is barely afloat as a country. This is a very sad observation. WAKE UP ” breathing” Guyanese shed the old political yoke, and tell your members of parliament that enough is enough. The last four generations have known nothing but strife, and starvation. In a couple of years you may have no income at all.

    • Abert  On 01/12/2014 at 4:10 am

      I could not agree with you more Malcolm. Our political leaders have destroyed Guyana. The sad thing is that the demise of the country is not due to a lack of brain power. We have had some brilliant minds in Guyana but most fled or were driven out. Look at what Barbados with limited resources has done. Politicians were relatively less corrupted, maintained a high level of social stability which is vital for tourism, the kind of industry which poor countries like Guyana should be trying more to develop. Instead the young in Guyana are more and more depending on handouts from their relatives abroad. If remittances stop many more will starve.

  • O. Samuels  On 01/09/2014 at 5:53 am

    I am of the strong and persuaded belief that Guyana’s deadly slope down the economic tubes began with the voodoo and witchcraft symbol which we refer to as “Cuffy Monument “. It is actually a voodoo curse. Situated in the pinnacles of the core of Georgetown. No where in the history books of Guyana do we read of Cuffy the Great Liberator of slavery looking like that. And on top of that squeezing a fish in one hand and a pig in the other. Where is the significance to slavery liberation in that?
    I say, it’s time to pull down the goddam monument and watch Guyana rise out of the ashes. “Every Guyanese, get your PhD…..PULL HIM DOWN!!!!!! Pull de damn monument down”

    • Thinker  On 01/09/2014 at 9:24 am

      All religions have a background in what can properly be described as witchcraft. Check what the words “hocus pocus” refers to. Guyana was in a mess long before the Cuffy Monument.

  • Tara  On 01/10/2014 at 2:51 am

    O Samuels! O Samuels! ……….Its our inability as a people to understand history that creates such hysteria among us. I think you are fooled by what little you know of Guyana’s history. Cuffy’s monument has nothing to do with the witchcraft and voodoo nonsence your are implying. This monument iwas designed as a symbol of the dehumanization of a people and their struggle to free themselves from oppression. Also, it was never meant to depict Cuffy the man, but a symbol of the war he waged to end the indignation and brutality of slavery. The enormity of the monument and the LOOK of pain and anger are all the things this monument is supposed to exhibit. This is the ugliness of SLAVERY O Samuels! This is Guyana’s history and should never be forgotten for generations to come. It was this struggle that paved the way for others who travelled from distant lands for a better future. It is a symbol of Guyana’s FREEDOM.

    Moreover, your rage should be against all things Colonial, which is still a focal point in Guyana’s history. Why do you not take down the monuments that stand in our courtyard on Avenue of the Republic, which is a sure reminder of our brutal Colonial past? Address that if you can! We are so WHITEWASHED that we cannot see the history in ourselves.

    Also, the World Bank Report is based upon per capita income and not what most Guyanese believe is wealth. Guyana has much wealth but 90% of its population can barely make a living. This is no kangaroo analysis, where numbers are airbrushed to fool the public so get with the program. Start some form of independent thinking and get out of the cave.

    • O. Samuels  On 01/10/2014 at 4:18 am

      Tara I pity you because you look with the natural eye. I SEE with the spiritual eye. So we cannot necessarily agree. The advantage that I have, nevertheless, is that I can see from both aspects. Natural and Spiritual. Carnality cannot understand supernaturality.
      The blindness of the Guyanese nation will continue until the EYES begin to penetrate the darkness that is over the land. Do you think it is the history of Guyana that has so many guns and killings, drugs and murders occurring in the society and the nation? You spoke of the pain depicted in the ugliness of Cuffy, the grimace…. Don’t you understand it is the pain that Guyanese are subdued by but can never utter a voice regarding how they feel…. Just like the monument. Tara, you will be the first one to roll up your sleeves to pull that damned thing down. And I do stress DAMN!!!

  • Tara  On 01/11/2014 at 11:57 pm

    “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheeps’ clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves”.
    Matthew 7:15

    O Samuels!….To be supernatural is to be divine. To pity someone, is a sense of compassion and to see with the natural eye is a sign of astuteness. Besides, I am all but divine. However, I think your political persuasion is somewhat skewed and my message simply got lost in your narrative.

    On the other hand, I can agree with your statement, which metaphorically addresses the blindness of the Guyanese people, to come to grips with the state of lunacy, which has gripped the Nation. But, this madness did not happen overnight, it was fueled by bigtory and lack of education.

    We can deny that it ain’t so, because Guyanese are the banding together with one voice to help curb this “cancer”. Furthermore, to be pointing the blame on a “MONUMENT” is idiotic. The tone of your rant was LFS Burnham motivated and only an illiterate would not recognize your tomfoolery.

    Again, I would like to reaffirm that CUFFY’S MONUMENT is a symbol of Guyana’s fight against the UGLINESS OF SLAVERY. It is the darkness, the might, the ugliness, the anger of this scourge that’s all wrapped up in this symbol of of a man. This monument is a symbol of Cuffy’s war to end the White man’s aggression against human. For those who just cannot understand its symbolism, then it goes back to our lack of education and the inability to process history.

    Just like the Holocust, there is a sector Guyana’s population who believe that slavery should be simplified and deny a people their rightful place in history. It is that lack of respect that we are seeing in Guyana’s culture today. Until we as a people respect each other, mayhem will be the order of the day for generations to come.

    Furthermore O Samuels, Your spirituality should help you foster and lead an irreprochable life.

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