Surinam - Omitted Country Of South America IV.
Economical development of Surinam was influenced by low population number, absence of transport roads of best level as well as by political instability of the country. Great National Product (GNP) of Surinam reached in 1996 totally USD 523 millions, i.e. USD 1306 per one person (in 1980, GNP reached USD 1,08 billions). GNP decrease was connected with partisan war, regarding bauxite excavation. Further, also unexperienced economy managing and inquiry decrease for bauxite and alluminium, main export articles of Surinam, played its role in this respect, for sure. Bauxite mining, which reached 80% of exportation each year in past, and 30% of GNP at the same time, decreased to 70% and GNP was lower of 15%. Excavation of bauxite stratta started, when 2nd World War was over. At that time, Surinam exported into USA more than 75% of bauxite ore. At present, in Surinam, there are excavated (mined) approx. 4 millions of tonns in a year, and so, this country belongs to ten greatest world producers of this commodity. Main layers are to be found in areas of Paranamo and Moeng, situated on north-east part of the country. The excavation of bauxite is highly mechanized, so this industrial branch employs less than 5% of working-capable population. During time period 1990-2000, Surinam exported also 300 kgs gold approximately. Even stratta of iron ore, copper, nickel, platinum, manganese or kaolin were investigated.
In 1981, finding places of petrol were discovered in Surinam. In 1997, the mining reached 300 000 tonns, and later, in 2007, the production reached 13000 barrels daily. Approx. 40% of rough petrol is being exported, and the rest is consumed for energetical security of alluminium-oxide and alluminium.
In general, Surinam industry is not too developed, so, the country is forced to import many products of consumer goods, despite the fact that Surinam is self-sufficient, as far as the foodstuffs areconcerned. On the other hand, quite developed areas are the excavations of gold and petrol, working up of wood and agriculture. Except mining and working up of bauxite, the country is producing various drinks, tobacco products, shoes and cement.
60% of agricultural products are represented with rice, mostly in Nickerie district. As far as the other products are concerned, so, the production of bananas, palm-oil, coco-nuts, agrums (lemons and oranges), coffee, beef or chickens could be mentioned. Sugar-cane was a base of colonial economy in past, however, this product has less importance now. On the other hand, wood excavation and sea-fishing is increasing.
Text: Maxim Kucer
Translation: ing. Jan Jonáš
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