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French Guiana

Country of French Guiana Flag

Capital: Cayenne

Population: 199,509

Brief History of French Guiana:

The original inhabitants of French Guiana were Native Americans. The French came to the area in the 17th century. They had a difficult time surviving due to tropical diseases. For a short period of time (1809 -1813) the Portuguese took over the area, but soon the French regained control through the Treaty of Paris.

France used the now infamous Devil's Island, an island off the coast of French Guiana, as a penal colony for criminals. France sent almost 56,000 prisoners to the island, few of which survived.

In 1964 the construction of a space-travel base was started in French Guiana. Today the Guiana Space Center is an important part of the European space industry.



Country of French Guiana Map

The Geography of French Guiana

Total Size: 91,000 square km

Size Comparison: slightly smaller than Indiana

Geographical Coordinates: 4 00 N, 53 00 W

World Region or Continent: South America

General Terrain: low-lying coastal plains rising to hills and small mountains

Geographical Low Point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m

Geographical High Point: Bellevue de l'Inini 851 m

Climate: tropical; hot, humid; little seasonal temperature variation

Major cities:

The People of French Guiana

Type of Government: NA

Languages Spoken: French

Independence: none (overseas department of France)

National Holiday: Bastille Day, 14 July (1789)

Nationality: French Guianese (singular and plural)

Religions: Roman Catholic

National Symbol:

National Anthem or Song:

Economy of French Guiana

Major Industries: construction, shrimp processing, forestry products, rum, gold mining

Agricultural Products: corn, rice, manioc (tapioca), sugar, cocoa, vegetables, bananas; cattle, pigs, poultry

Natural Resources: bauxite, timber, gold (widely scattered), petroleum, kaolin, fish, niobium, tantalum, clay

Major Exports: shrimp, timber, gold, rum, rosewood essence, clothing

Major Imports: food (grains, processed meat), machinery and transport equipment, fuels and chemicals

Currency: euro (EUR)

National GDP: $1,551,000,000




** Source for population (2012 est.) and GDP (2011 est.) is CIA World Factbook.

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