Middle East / Africa

Equatorial Guinea flag
Summary | Profile

Country profile: Equatorial Guinea

Location: Western Africa, bordering the Bight of Biafra, between Cameroon and Gabon
Climate: tropical; always hot, humid
Terrain: coastal plains rise to interior hills; islands are volcanic
Size: 28051 sq. km total (Land area: 28051 sq. km )
Population: 616,459 (July 2008 est.)
Languages: Spanish 67.6% (official), other 32.4% (includes French (official), Fang, Bubi) (1994 census)
Government: republic
Capital city: Malabo
Legal system: partly based on Spanish civil law and tribal custom; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Currency: Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XAF); note

Country profile

Equatorial Guinea has experienced rapid economic growth due to the discovery of large offshore oil reserves, and has become Sub-Saharan Africa’s third largest oil exporter after Nigeria and Angola. According to the World Bank, oil revenues increased in value from $3 million in 1993 to $190 million in 2000 to $3.3 billion in 2006. From 2002 to 2006 the country experienced an average real annual GDP growth of 15.8 percent. Oil exports currently represent over 90 percent of total export earnings. However, a slowdown in oil production has caused GDP growth to decelerate to 6.8 percent in 2007. Equatorial Guinea is a sub-Saharan African country consisting of a mainland area (Rio Muni province) and a series of islands.

The country’s capital, Malabo, is located on Bioko Island, approximately 25 miles off the coast of Cameroon. Despite the rapid growth in real GDP, allegations abound over how the Equatoguinean government has misappropriated its oil revenues. While the government has made some infrastructure improvements to bolster the oil industry, the average Equatoguinean has yet to experience a higher standard of living from the oil revenues as evidenced by the country’s ranking of 120 (out of 177) on the human development index in 2006. In January 2005, Equatorial Guinea pledged to increase transparency in its oil revenues and is currently implementing the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI).

Currently, foreign oil companies are beginning to make development related investments in education (Amerada Hess) and malaria prevention (Marathon Oil and Noble Energy). Territorial Disputes In recent years, Equatorial Guinea and its neighbors have expanded their offshore oil exploration, which has increased the importance of maritime borders. In March 1999, President Obiang unilaterally adopted an equidistant median line that defined territorial boundaries as stipulated under the U.N.

Convention on the Law of the Sea. Cameroon, Sao Tome & Principe, and Nigeria accepted the decision as an improvement over the often disputed traditional boundaries. Since the 1970’s, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon have disputed the ownership of three islands in the Gulf of Guinea, including Mbagne Island. In July 2004, the two countries reached an agreement allowing joint oil exploration in the disputed territories. In February 2006, the presidents of both countries met in Geneva, Switzerland and under U.N. mediation they agreed to resolve any major outstanding border issues by 2007.

Energy production and consumption

Oil Gas
Production: 396,100 bbl/day (2005 est.) 1 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Consumption: 1,000 bbl/day (2005 est.) 1 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Exports: 371,700 bbl/day (2004 est.)  
Imports: 1,026 bbl/day (2004 est.)  
Reserves: 563  million bbl (1 January 2002 est.) 35 billion cu m (1 January 2006 est.)
Major fields:

Equatorial Guinea - recent news

23 Apr 24
Equatorial Guinea: Panoro Energy secures rig to recommence drilling offshore Equatorial Guinea
Panoro Energy has announced that following an evaluation of available options the operator of Block G offshore Equatorial Guinea, Trident Energy, has on behalf of the joint venture awarded a contract for the Noble Venturer drill ship to recommence infill drilling at the Ceiba Field and Okume Complex.
18 Apr 24
Equatorial Guinea: Petrofac awarded contract supporting the National Oil Company of Equatorial Guinea
Petrofac has been awarded a Technical Services Contract by Companía Nacional de Petróleos de Guinea Ecuatorial (GEPetrol), the National Oil Company of Equatorial Guinea, to support the operation of the region’s Block B asset.
04 Apr 24
Equatorial Guinea: Panoro Energy agrees Heads of Terms for Block EG-23 Offshore Equatorial Guinea
Panoro Energy has reached an agreement with the Government of Equatorial Guinea on the key terms and conditions for the award of offshore Block EG-23.
25 Mar 24
Equatorial Guinea: VAALCO Energy announces finalization of agreements in Equatorial Guinea
VAALCO Energy has announced that all partners have signed the final documents and the Government of Equatorial Guinea has approved the Joint Operating agreement ('JOA') related to the previously approved Venus-Block P Plan of Development ('POD'). The Block P Production Sharing Contract ('PSC') provides for a development and production period of 25 years from the date of approval of the POD.
12 Feb 24
Equatorial Guinea: Panoro Energy provides update on Equatorial Guinea infill drilling campaign
Panoro Energy has provided an update on the drilling campaign offshore Equatorial Guinea that commenced on Block G in January. The JV is of the view that the rig is not operationally safe to drill the wells and the Operator is evaluating alternative options that will allow for the recommencement of the drilling campaign (including the Kosmos operated Akeng Deep exploration well).

Equatorial Guinea - more news

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