Equatorial Guinea: Doing business and staying in touch
Doing Business in Equatorial Guinea
Business tends to be conducted in Spanish; few speak English or French.
During the 1990s, the development of the country's oil and gas reserves (which now account for about a quarter of GDP) produced spectacular economic growth (up to 20% annually) that has persisted at a steady rate. Equatorial Guinea has also confirmed deposits of gold, uranium, iron ore, tantalum and manganese.
Intervention by the IMF in the mid 1990s has led to restructuring of the public and financial sectors. A long legacy of maladministration, corruption (the country's largest companies are still largely owned by members of the ruling family) and the lack of even the most basic services has hampered development.
US$10.4 billion (2007).
Petroleum, methanol, timber, coffee, cocoa, bananas and spices.
Petroleum sector equipment and other equipment.
Main trading partners
Cameroon, Canada, China and Côte d'Ivoire.
Keeping in Touch in Equatorial Guinea
Operator assistance may be required when making international calls from the country.
Roaming agreements exist with a few international mobile phone companies. Coverage is limited to Malabo and a few other inhabited areas.
Internet is available in limited areas; coverage is variable.
The main broadcasters are state controlled. There are a few private newspapers and underground pamphlets that publish irregularly. Mild criticism of public institutions is allowed but criticism of the leadership is not tolerated and self-censorship is widespread.
Service to Western Europe takes up to two weeks.