Eq. Guinea, a Voice for Africa, Joins OPEC

Today’s OPEC meeting in Vienna marks an historic moment for Equatorial Guinea and the Minister of Mines and Hydrocarbons H.E. Gabriel Mbaga Obiang Lima. The Central African oil and gas producer, Africa’s third largest producer of crude oil, was accepted as the fourteenth member of the global oil exporters’ club and the fourth member from Sub-Saharan Africa.

The agreement to join OPEC comes just four months after H.E. the Minister announced his intention to bring Equatorial Guinea into the bloc. In December 2016, the 13 member states plus 11 non-OPEC members including Equatorial Guinea agreed to production cuts of 1.8 million barrels per day in the first six months of 2017. At today’s 172nd OPEC meeting it was expected that ministers of petroleum and energy would agree to an extension of the agreement for an additional nine months or more. Equatorial Guinea’s share of the cuts from January 2017 is 12,000 barrels per day.

H.E. Gabriel Mbaga Obiang Lima has been a champion of OPEC’s decision to limit supply in order to stabilize global energy markets. Equatorial Guinea now has a powerful platform to represent a voice for Sub-Saharan African producers, including fellow members Angola, Nigeria and Gabon and non-member states. Equatorial Guinea, according to the Ministry of Mines and Hydrocarbons, brings to OPEC the benefit of diplomatic reach in Africa, decades of expertise and innovation in the oil and gas industry, and an open and committed approach to solving issues of great significance to global energy producers and consumers alike.

“Equatorial Guinea’s joining of OPEC is a triumph. This is a proud moment for us,” said H.E. the Minister at the meeting. “There has never been a more important time to stand together and it is our honour to stand with OPEC as a positive force in global energy. We will use this platform to advance the interests of all African oil and gas explorers and producers and all OPEC members.”

In addition to joining OPEC, Equatorial Guinea begins work on two important initiatives in 2017: Fortuna FLNG, Africa’s first floating liquefied natural gas plant; and the Bioko Oil Terminal, the largest crude oil and petroleum products storage facility in West and Central Africa. Delegates at AOP 2017 can watch H.E. the Minister present information on these projects, as well as announce the winners of the EG Ronda 2016 bidding round, at a special session on June 5 in Cape Town.