Equatorial Guinea infrastructure plan includes hydropower

Equatorial Guinea plans investments valued at US12.26 billion over five years for infrastructure programs including a hydroelectric project.

A government report, released after a November economic strategy conference, said the former Spanish colony plans to invest the 5.5 trillion Central French Africa francs to diversify its economy away from its reliance on oil and gas.

The plans includes a hydroelectric power plant, a refinery, new roads to penetrate the heavily forested interior, a new airport, a gas power station, hospitals, and training facilities.

The discovery of large offshore oil fields in the mid-1990s transformed Equatorial Guinea from one of Africa’s poorest nations to one of its richest per capita. However, the new-found wealth has yet to trickle down to its estimated 1 million inhabitants. The economy is expected to expand by more than 20 percent this year, the finance ministry said.

China’s Sinohydro Corp. signed a US$257 million contract in March with the Ministry of Energy and Minerals to build a 120-MW hydroelectric project in Equatorial Guinea. (HNN 4/12/07)

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