Suriname - Industry

The major industries are bauxite and gold mining, alumina and aluminum production, lumber, and food processing. Industry accounted for 22% of GDP in 1998.

The bauxite industry, which accounts for about 15% of GDP and 70% of export revenue, has developed into a complex of factories, workshops, power stations, laboratories, hospitals, recreational facilities, residential areas, and sports grounds. The bauxite refinery near Paramaribo produced 1.6 million tons of alumina and 32,000 tons of aluminum in 1995. Depressed world prices for bauxite and alumina in recent years have reduced the industry's development.

The long-term future of the mining industry depends on the companies' ability to keep production costs low and competitive, the availability of financing to exploit new reserves, and on the consolidation of peace in the country's interior. Because mineral rights are still vested in the state, exploration rights are granted by the government. The Canadian company Golden Star started mining for gold in Suriname in 1992. Proven and probable oil reserves in Suriname are estimated at 166 billion barrels. The State Oil Company of Suriname, or Staatsolie, produced 12,500 barrels per day in 1999. Suriname has one oil refinery.

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