Gabon’s cash crops are palm oil, cocoa, coffee and sugar. Equatorial Guinea has several capital-intensive projects open for investment in 2020. Photo: Luns-Brunet BOUDENGUE-WAMBA/Pixabay

JOHANNESBURG - Equatorial Guinea has several capital-intensive projects open for investment in 2020, including the construction of three oil refineries, liquefied petroleum gas strategic tanks, a Urea plant and the expansion of a compressed natural gas project, its mines and hydrocarbons minister Gabriel Obiang said this week.

Obiang announced the 10 public-private, partnership-led projects,  which will focus on downstream diversification and adding value to domestic crude production, at the sidelines of an international forum for gas exporting countries in the capital Malabo.

"2019 was a year in which we showed the world the potential of Equatorial Guinea. That was phase one. Phase two is the investment year. For many years, we have been exploiting our resources and exporting them, but now is the time that we get to the stage of processing,” he said.

"Midstream is going to be very important because we already have the resources. Our crude is going to China and our liquefied natural gas is going to Asia. What can we do with our resources to add value in the midstream and downstream?”

The first project under the initiative will be the construction of a 20,000-barrel per day (bpd) modular oil refinery which will refine crude from the Zafiro and Aseng fields into gasoline, kerosene and Jet 1, among other petroleum derivatives.

The second modular refinery will produce 10,000-20,000 bpd on the mainland in Kogo next to the country’s re-gasification and cement plants. A third refinery in Kogo is planned to refine the gold being exploited in the country and the wider Central African region.

Another three projects in Malabo, Bata and Kogo will see the construction of state-owned and mangaged strategic tanks to refine and store oil, gasoline and liquefied petroleum gas.

The government also aims to construct a methanol-to-gasoline unit to meet domestic consumption, with the possibility of exporting to neighboring countries in the future. 

To enable the processing and production of minerals, Equatorial Guinea will also build a urea plant in Kogo, complementing the country’s recently held first mining licensing round, and centralising the exploitation of minerals to the region surrounding Kogo.

The final project involves the country’s compressed natural gas (CNG) plant  which includes a bus terminal and gas-powered bus fleet, cooking gas bottling facility and upgraded road infrastructure, and positions Equatorial Guinea as the first country in the region to use CNG for transport.

The government plans to implement CNG for the majority of public vehicles and to increase its storage through partnerships with companies such as Total and state-owned GEPetrol.

- African News Agency (ANA)