Guyana is known for being the only English-speaking country in South America, according to the Encyclopedia Britannica. The country is also known for bauxite and gold reserves, rice fields, sugarcane plantations and well-preserved rainforests. Guyana's natural resources are its most notable economic assets.
The name of the country originates in the language of the indigenous people, who called the country "guiana," which means land of water. Guyana became an independent country in 1966. Until the country's first prime minister, Forbes Burnham, died in 1985, Guyana was steadily moving toward communism as an economic and political system. Following Burnham's death, Guyana strengthened its ties with the West and commenced privatization.