World Travelling Guide
World Travelling Guide



Accommodation in Southern Africa and South Africa including accommodation in Western Cape, Eastern Cape, Northern Cape, Gauteng, Limpopo Province, North West Province, Free State, Kwazulu-Natal, Mpumalanga

List of Countries
Map of Africa

Equatorial Guinea Travelling Guide
Equatorial Guinea Travelling Guide

General background: Composed of a mainland portion and five inhabited islands, Equatorial Guinea, which gained independence in 1968 after 190 years of Spanish rule, has been ruled by President OBIANG NGUEM MBASOGO since he seized power in a coup in 1979. Although nominally a constitutional democracy since 1991, the 1996 presidential and 1999 legislative elections were widely seen as being flawed.

Area comparative: Slightly smaller than Maryland

Climate: Tropical; always hot, humid

Terrain: Coastal plains rise to interior hills; islands are volcanic

Population: 498,144 (July 2002 est.)

Ethnic groups: Bioko (primarily Bubi, some Fernandinos), Rio Muni (primarily Fang), Europeans less than 1,000, mostly Spanish

Religions: Nominally Christian and predominantly Roman Catholic, pagan practices

Language: Spanish (official), French (official), pidgin English, Fang, Bubi, Ibo

Government type: Republic

Capital: Malabo

Legal system: Partly based on Spanish civil law and tribal custom.

Economic overview: The discovery and exploitation of large oil reserves have contributed to dramatic economic growth in recent years. Forestry, farming, and fishing are also major components of GDP. Subsistence farming predominates. Although pre-independence Equatorial Guinea counted on cocoa production for hard currency earnings, the neglect of the rural economy under successive regimes has diminished potential for agriculture-led growth (the government has stated its intention to reinvest some oil revenue into agriculture). A number of aid programs sponsored by the World Bank and the IMF have been cut off since 1993 because of corruption and mismanagement. No longer eligible for concessional financing because of large oil revenues, the government has been unsuccessfully trying to agree on a "shadow" fiscal management program with the World Bank and IMF. Businesses, for the most part, are owned by government officials and their family members. Undeveloped natural resources include titanium, iron ore, manganese, uranium, and alluvial gold. Boosts in production and higher world oil prices stimulated growth in 2002, with oil accounting for 90% of increased exports.

Communication/Telephone system: Poor system with adequate government services.

Places of interest:
About the only attraction aside from the beach is the many bars that you'll find on almost every corner of every village and town.

Travel tips: