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The Small South American Country that Could See the Fastest GDP Growth in 2020

Professor of Financial Economics and Part-time Value Investor, Transfin.
Nov 5, 2019 8:07 AM 2 min read

Guyana is a tiny South American country with a population smaller than Gurgaon's and area slightly larger than Gujarat's. It is dwarfed by neighbouring giants Brazil and Venezuela, and its GDP is ranked 154th in a 185-country list.


And yet, suddenly, people are excited about Guyana. Why? Because it is projected to become the fastest-growing country in the world next year. Its GDP is expected to more than triple in the next five years. And the IMF predicts growth - which was 4.4% this year - to increase to a whopping 86%.


Black Gold: The reason behind this miracle growth rate? One word - oil. In 2015, offshore oil deposits were discovered, Exxon Mobil entered the scenario, and now oil production is scheduled to begin in the next few months.


The Small South American Country that Could See the Fastest GDP Growth in 2020


Hold Your Horses: While an 86% growth rate seems unreal and covetous, it must be viewed keeping in mind the very low base. Guyana's present annual GDP is c. $4bn. Even if the IMF's projected rates hold true, Guyana's economy would be worth only about $15bn by 2024. While an economy - and thus economic growth - of such a size can hardly be compared to major ones like the US, China, India etc., the jump in revenue will no doubt go a long way in helping Guyana fund social welfare and development projects.



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