Please see the 2020 Country Commercial Guide – Guyana for an overview of economic conditions and commercial opportunities available in Guyana.
I. Exporting to Guyana
If you are considering business in Guyana here are some steps you may consider as you get started:
Visit Guyana’s Country Commercial Guide for an overview of economic conditions and opportunities.
1. Visit export.gov page to get an overview of economic conditions and opportunities in the Caribbean. Access the U.S. Commercial Service Market Research Library containing more than 100,000 industry and country-specific market reports, authored by our specialists working in overseas posts.
2. Contact Information and Links for Assistance
- Contact your local U.S. Export Assistance Center for advice and support on exporting to Guyana. Contact a Trade Specialist Near You
- Contact your local Small Business Development Center (SBDCs). Starting a business can be a challenge, but there is help for you in your area. Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) are partnerships primarily between the government and colleges/universities administered by the Small Business Administration and aims at giving educational services for small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs.
- Contact in-country business support organizations such as the American Chambers of Commerce, Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association, Private Sector Commission, and Georgetown Chambers of Commerce and Industry.
- Make use of business matchmaking services: Whether you’re looking to make your first export sale or expand your business in this market, Embassy Georgetown offers: trade counselling, market intelligence, business matchmaking, and commercial diplomacy you need to connect with lucrative business opportunities.
II. Investing in Guyana
This section provides information for current and potential investors in Guyana.
- Potential Investors: Getting Started
If you are considering investing in Guyana, here are some steps you may wish to consider as you get started:
- Register with the U.S. Embassy: if you are planning a visit to explore business opportunities, let us know by sending an email to the CommerceGeorgetown@state.gov
- Review the Department of State’s Investment Climate Statement and the Department of Commerce’s Country Commercial Guides for the latest analysis of the economic and political conditions in Guyana.
- Participate in a Direct Line webinar for information on market opportunities provided by Ambassadors and local experts.
- Identify leads on active and potential projects funded by multilateral development banks with the Department of State’s Business Information Database System (BIDS)
- Explore Guyana’s resources for businesses including the Guyana Office for Investment (GOINVEST), Guyana Central Bank’s Annual Report, and the Department of Public Information.
- Consider contacting U.S. business support organizations such as the local American Chamber of Commerce.
- Subscribe to our embassy Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/USEmbassyGeorgetown/
2. Current Investors: Staying Connected
If you are a current U.S. investor in Guyana, the U.S. Embassy wants to stay in touch. Here are a few steps you can take to keep the channels of communication open:
- Register with the U.S. Embassy: if you are active in Guyana, let us know by sending an email to the contact addresses to: CommerceGeorgetown@state.gov
- Add our firstname.lastname@example.org email address to your mailing lists: we are always happy to stay informed.
- Subscribe to our embassy Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/USEmbassyGeorgetown/
- Set up a meeting with our economic or commercial team to discuss any issues that arise. The commerce team may be contacted at CommerceGeorgetown@state.gov
- Working in Guyana
In this section you will find information on business visas, travel advisories, and anti-corruption tools.
Business Visas U.S. Citizens do not require a visa to enter Guyana.
Travel Advisories Make sure to check the current State Department travel advisory for Guyana. Americans are encouraged to enroll in the STEP program.
FCPA The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) is an important anti-corruption tool designed to discourage corrupt business practices in favor of free and fair markets. The FCPA prohibits promising, offering, giving or authorizing giving anything of value to a foreign government official where the purpose is to obtain or retain business. These prohibitions apply to U.S. persons, both individuals and companies, and companies that are listed on U.S. exchanges. The statute also requires companies publicly traded in the U.S. to keep accurate books and records and implement appropriate internal controls.
More information on the FCPA can be found here: http://www.justice.gov/criminal/fraud/fcpa/ A party to a transaction seeking to know whether a proposed course of conduct would violate the FCPA can take advantage of the opinion procedure established by the statue. Within 30 days of receiving a description of a proposed course of conduct in writing, the Attorney General will provide the party with a written opinion on whether the proposed conduct would violate the FCPA. Not only do opinions provide the requesting party with a rebuttable presumption that the conduct does not violate the FCPA, but DOJ publishes past opinions which can provide guidance for other companies facing similar situations.
More information on the DOJ opinion procedure can be found here: https://www.justice.gov/criminal-fraud/fcpa-opinions
III. US. Embassy Georgetown’s Commercial Services Partner Post Program
U.S. Embassy Georgetown is a Commercial Service Partner Post. What does this mean for my business?
The Partner Post Program is intended to provide commercial support to U.S. companies seeking assistance in countries where the U.S. Foreign Commercial Service (FCS) does not have FCS Officers stationed at the Embassy. As a Partner Post U.S. Embassy Georgetown provides commercial services which are traditionally offered by an FCS office. U.S. clients can expect FCS quality service and products. Many of these services are fee-based and can provide high-quality connections as well as business counselling for doing business in the local market.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Where can I find legal and accounting assistance in Guyana to start my business?
Local lawyers and accountants can provide advice on the type of business entity you should register for your operations, provide company registration assistance, and ensure tax compliance. Investors may find lawyers via http://guyanabarassociation.org/lawyers and accountants via https://www.icag.org.gy/
Disclaimer: The U.S. Embassy does not endorse any of these sites and is not liable for any failed private transactions between the investor and local parties.
2. What documents are needed to register a foreign firm? U.S. investors should possess the following documents and information to reduce lead time:
- The legal, registered, name of the company.
- The jurisdiction within which the company was incorporated
- The date of incorporation
- Details of the company’s structure including limited liability, shareholders, governing structure, etc.
- A detailed description of the business activities the company will carry out in Guyana
- The date on which the company intends to commence operations in Guyana
- The authorized, subscribed and paid-up or stated capital of the company and the shares that the company is authorized to issue and their nominal or par value, if any
- The full address of the registered or head office of the companies outside Guyana
- The full address of the principal office
- The full names, addresses and occupations of the directors of the company
- U. S. Businesses are encouraged to seek a local consultant, lawyer or accountant to provide guidance through this process
Deeds and Commercial Registries Authority: Address: Lot 1 High and Commerce Streets, Newtown, Stabroek, Georgetown, Guyana Phone: 592-225-4358 or 592-225-4322 Email: email@example.com
3. How can U.S. companies register for tax compliance?
U.S. companies are encouraged to seek legal counsel to assist in this process. Companies should file their tax registration immediately after registering the business. Registering for a company tax identification number (TIN) is done through Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA): https://www.gra.gov.gy/forms/. Necessary documents for a TIN application include:
- A copy of the Certificate of Incorporation
- A copy of two directors’ valid identification
- Completed company TIN application form
- $5 USD fee (Fee is subject to change by the Guyana Revenue Authority)
Guyana Revenue Authority: General tax queries: (592) 227-6060 extensions: 1201- 120
4. What business arrangements work best in Guyana?
U.S. investors have been successful entering the Guyanese market by entering into joint ventures, hiring a local company representative, franchising, licensing, and strategic alliances. It is imperative to conduct background checks and any other necessary due diligence on potential partners. U.S. businesses are encouraged to seek legal counsel and an accountant when doing business in Guyana.
5. Where do I find Government of Guyana tenders?
The Guyana National Tender Board posts tenders on its website: https://npta.gov.gy/ Government tenders can be found in local newspapers. Note: Guyanese law stipulate tenders should be posted online and in the local media.
6. How can I access U.S. government financing for my business?
The International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) offers project financing. It requires a 2-3 page project summary, audited financials of the company for the past three years, and financial projections for the proposed venture. DFC will not finance public/private partnerships in which the government has an ownership stake greater than 49%. Guidelines for project proposals can be found on the DFC website. Other sources of U.S. financing may include EXIM Bank and the U.S. Trade and Development Agency. U.S. investors should contact their nearest U.S. Export Assistance Center.
Disclaimer: This information has been provided as a resource to familiarize U.S. exporters with Guyana’s Business Environment. When pursuing any transaction, you are encouraged to conduct your own due diligence and to consult legal counsel as appropriate.