On January 10, 1918, Arthur Chung, the first Chinese to become president of a non-Asian state, was born. Namely, in 1970, Chung became President of Guyana, a South American state that was once a British colony. Guyana is located on the Atlantic coast of South America, between Suriname and Venezuela, and has borders with Brazil. In general, the population of Guyana is ethnically mixed, with descendants of many immigrants from Africa, India, China, Portugal and other parts of the world living there.
Born in the British colony of Guyana, Arthur Chung was educated as a lawyer in England. In 1970, he was elected the first president in Guyana’s history (until then the state was a member of the Commonwealth, with Queen Elizabeth II of Britain as monarch as head of state). Chung was 53 when he was elected President of the Republic. With this choice, he became the first Chinese to become president of a non-Asian state and also the first president of an Anglophone Caribbean state. He held the presidency until 1980, a full ten years, and passed away in 2008 at the age of 91. After him, the presidents of Guyana became persons of European, Indian and African descent, making the country a specific multiethnic character in the world.