Guyana Military - 2023


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Military and security forces

the Guyana Defense Force is a unified force with ground, air, and coast guard components, as well as the Guyana National Reserve (2023)

Military expenditures

0.6% of GDP (2022 est.)

1% of GDP (2021 est.)

1.2% of GDP (2020 est.)

1.3% of GDP (2019 est.)

1.3% of GDP (2018 est.)

Military and security service personnel strengths

approximately 4,000 active duty military personnel (2022)

Military equipment inventories and acquisitions

the military has a limited inventory comprised mostly of second-hand platforms from a variety of foreign suppliers, including Brazil, China, the former Soviet Union, the UK, and the US (2023)

Military service age and obligation

18 years of age or older for voluntary military service; no conscription (2022)

Military - note

the Guyana Defense Force (GDF) was established in 1965; its primary missions are defense of the country, including border security, assisting civil authorities with law and order as needed, and contributing to the Guyana’s economic development; key areas of concern include disaster response, illegal fishing, narcotics trafficking, piracy, and porous borders; the GDF trains regularly and participates in both bilateral and multinational exercises; it has relationships with Brazil, China, France, the UK, and the US; the GDF’s ground force officers are trained at the British Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst, while coast guard officers receive training at the British Royal Naval College

the GDF’s ground combat forces include 3 infantry battalions (1 reserve), a special forces squadron, and an artillery company; the coast guard has an offshore patrol craft and a few patrol boats, as well as a small amphibious “raider” force; the air corps does not have any combat aircraft but instead provides tactical observation, transport, casualty evacuation, and other forms of support to the ground forces (2023)

Maritime threats

the International Maritime Bureau reports the territorial waters of Guyana are a risk for armed robbery against ships; in 2022, two attacks against commercial vessels were reported, these are the first attacks reported in three years; all of these occurred in port while ships were berthed or at anchor

NOTE: The information regarding Guyana on this page is re-published from the 2023 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Guyana 2023 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Guyana 2023 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 06 Dec 23, Copyright © 2023 ITA all rights reserved.