United States Economic Consortium Mission to Equatorial Guinea – Horizon 2020

 

A multi-disciplinary mission of the United States private sector enterprise consortium, led by Management and Economics Consulting, Inc. (MAECI) undertook an economic and commercial mission to Equatorial Guinea from March 9th to March 17th, 2013.

 

 

On June 10th – 13th, 2012, H.E. Obiang Nguema Mbasago, President of The Republic, Head of State of Equatorial Guinea, led an Economic Forum in Houston, Texas, USA.  During that forum, H.E. the President made an appeal to the United States private sector companies in attendance, to come to Equatorial Guinea to participate in the economic development diversification undertaken by the country within its economic and social development program called “Horizon 2020”.  In addition H.E. stated that if your company has an interest in doing business in Equatorial Guinea, to keep in mind that EG can’t do business with people they do not know, thereby encouraging U.S. companies to visit the country.

This most recent U.S. mission conducted in Equatorial Guinea was the U.S. private sectors enterprise consortium’s response to that appeal.  The U.S. Economic Consortium represented enterprises in the following sectors: Agriculture, Healthcare, Water Purification, IT and communications, Solar Energy, Education, Transportation and Human Resources.

 

The U.S. consortium’s objectives were clear. Introducing the U.S. private sector to Equatorial Guinea Officials and entrepreneurs with the goal of launching a partnership beneficial to the two parties.  Identifying the sectors of priority in the development process, the role of the Equatorial Guinea private sector in the process and how a fruitful cooperation/partnership can be established to facilitate the transfer of adapted know how, the improvement of National technical and human resources, professional education and having the  U.S. private sector participate effectively in the economic development diversification process.

The mission was undertaken in consultation with and the encouragement of United States Governors, Congressman and Senators.

Members of the U.S. Delegation with Director General Francisca Eyang Ondo and her Horizon 2020 team

The U.S. Economic Consortium attended a meeting with the Office of Horizon 2020.  The meeting was led by Director General Francisca Eyang Ondo, Director General, assisted by Ms. Manuela Oyana Ndong, Deputy Executive Secretary.  H.E. Ondo gave the U.S. Economic Consortium an overview of the Horizon 2020 initiative and current status.  H.E. described the main economic sectors of priority and reported that the initial phase was started in 2007; the program was to create an infrastructure within EG.  This includes roads, airports, buildings, harbors and power systems.  Phase 1 is well underway and nearing conclusion.  Now in 2013, phase 2 is beginning with the goal to diversify the economy and build the private sector.  This phase will run from 2013 – 2016.

The U.S. Economic Consortium was excited to hear this, as it fits directly into their own desires to bring U.S. involvement and investment into Phase 2 of the Horizon 2020 initiative.  The U.S. delegation explained that they felt the timing was perfect to start the process of introducing U.S. private sector partners to the EG market, and begin deploying these private sector subject matter experts to assist the EG private sector in growing their businesses.  The U.S. Economic Consortium stated that they represent over 20 U.S. companies, and is confident this number will grow dramatically when they return to the U.S. and make their report to these companies and U.S. government officials.

The U.S. Economic Consortium representatives were extremely impressed and thankful for the professional organization and structure of the mission provided by the government representatives.

The U.S. Economic consortium’s conclusion is that without the accelerated growth of the private sector, it will be difficult to achieve Phase 2 of Horizon 2020.  To date the overwhelming majority of growth activity has come from the Oil & Gas industry and the EG government.  It is apparent that the Oil & Gas industry will continue to have a laser focus on Oil & Gas development within EG, and won’t be able to assist in the development of the private sector, and government is not a producer, but only a facilitator.    The EG private sector appears to be ready to make this happen.

 

 

Business meeting at the Chamber of Commerce of Bioko

Economic Delegation

Pictured Above: United States Economic Delegation led by MAECI in Equatorial Guinea

At the headquarters of the Chamber of Commerce of Bioko, Gregorio Boho Camo, president of the entity, received a delegation of seven U.S. businessmen, headed by Chris J. Massaro, the Vice President of the company Maeci, and composed of representatives from Philadelphia International Medicine, Leonard Karp, and the presidents of Sun-In-One New Electrical Solar Light and Power Products, William Rawheiser, and that of Flow Enterprises, Florian Kouamou, among others.

The aim of the visit of the delegation was to correspond to the invitation that the Head of State, Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, made to the North American businessmen during the World Economic Forum held in Houston in 2012 to support the national private sector. The sectors that are to be analyzed and evaluated for investment opportunities in Equatorial Guinea are agriculture, transportation, human resources, technology and health.

Gregorio Boho thanked the delegation for their visit, and said that “we are open to developing the cooperation program in the sectors in which North American businessmen want to invest in Equatorial Guinea.”

The ceremony was also attended by the Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce of the Continental Region, Rosendo Ela Baby, the Director General of Small and Medium Businesses, and the Secretary of the Chamber of Bioko, among others. The delegation’s visit will be extended to the mainland.

 

Equatorial Guinea Chamber of Commerce- Bata and Private Sector meets with United States Economic Delegation

 

 

Equatorial Guinea Chamber of Commerce – Bata leadership with U.S. Economic Delegation

 

 

 

A delegation of companies from the United States on an economic mission in Equatorial Guinea, led by MAECI, visited the headquarters of the Equatorial Guinea Chamber of Commerce – Bata on Thursday.  The purpose of the delegation’s trip to Equatorial Guinea was in response to H.E. President Obiang’s appeal for assistance from United States companies in the diversification of the country’s economy, and the strengthening of Equatorial Guinea’s private sector.

The U.S. Economic consortium attended a meeting with the EG Chamber of Commerce (Bata) leadership.  In addition, the private business sector was represented by business owners located in the city of Bata.  The U.S. Economic consortium presented the concept of assisting and investing in the private sector of Equatorial Guinea.

The consortium reinforced the concept by explaining that the success of the U.S. economic growth over the past 70 years has been based on the building of the private sector.

The U.S. private sector was built and financed by private investment, Government subsidy and international joint venture.

The delegation of U.S. companies stated that they were extremely interested in partnering with the private sector of Equatorial Guinea, and will look to bring financing solutions and industry knowledge to build this partnership.

 

Equatorial Guinea Minister of Health received a delegation from the U.S.

 

Minister of Health – H.E. Tomas Mecheba Fernandez and his ministry, meeting with Philadelphia International Medicine with United States Delegation led by MAECI.

After the meeting at the Chamber of Commerce of Bioko, the delegation from the United States was received by the Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Tomas Mecheba Fernandez, in his office at the ministry headquarters.

Among the U.S. businessmen, there are medical specialists who have shown interest in investing in the health sector in our country.

It should be noted that this visit was in answer to the invitation extended to them by H.E. Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, during the Economic Forum on Equatorial Guinea, which took place last year 2012 in the city of Houston

 

Ministry of Health and Social Welfare of Equatorial Guinea meets with United States Economic Delegation

A delegation of companies from the United States on an economic mission in Equatorial Guinea, led by MAECI, visited the headquarters of the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare in Malabo on Monday.  The purpose of the delegation’s trip to Equatorial Guinea was in response to H.E. President Obiang’s appeal for assistance from United States companies in the diversification of the country’s economy, and the strengthening of Equatorial Guinea’s private sector.

Minister of Health and Social Welfare, H.E. Tomas Mecheba Fernandez lead the meeting with the delegation and his ministry team to discuss a partnership with the United States companies,  MAECI and Philadelphia International Medicine.

Len Karp, President & CEO of Philadelphia International Medicine made a presentation to the leaders of the Ministry.  Mr. Karp discussed the desire for Philadelphia International Medicine to work with Equatorial Guinea, and their Health and Social Welfare Ministry, and serve as their Healthcare advisor.

Philadelphia International Medicine is owned by Fox Chase Cancer Center, Temple University Hospital, and Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and has service agreements with Nemours/Alfred I. DuPont Hospital for Children, Jefferson Home Care, Magee Rehabilitation Hospital and Wills Eye Institute.  These hospital systems are world renown, and some of the highest ranking health systems in the United States.

The Ministry of Health and Social Welfare and Philadelphia International Medicine have agreed to begin working towards a Mutual Understanding Agreement (MOU).  This relationship will bring world class healthcare to the people of Equatorial Guinea, and the country can become a regional healthcare center for the Western Central African region.

Also discussed was a trip to Philadelphia by leaders from the Ministry, as well current healthcare professionals in the country.  The trip would give Equatorial Guinea a firsthand look at one of the top health systems in the United States and the world.

U.S. Ambassador to Equatorial Guinea visits Annobon Island

 

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Over this past weekend, Mark L. Asquino, U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, visited Annabon Island, and Equatorial Guinea province.

 

Asquino started off his trip with Governor Panades of Annobon Province and gave opening remarks at the US Embassy-funded youth and gender-based violence conference, focusing on reproductive health and gender equality.

 

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During his trip to the island, he also paid a visit to the Annobon Electrification Project being completed by MAECI, a U.S. company.  Ambassador Asquino visited each of the three installation sites included in The Annobon Island Electrification project.

 

This project supports President Obiang Nguema’s “National Economic Development Plan” adopted in November 2007 at the Second National Economic Conference, “Horizon 2020”, focus on the key strategies and reforms necessary for Equatorial Guinea to take advantage of its unique opportunity to use its nonrenewable oil wealth, to foster the wellbeing of its population and future generations.

 

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The solar project is historic in that it will be the largest self-sufficient solar project on the contine

nt of Africa, and one of the largest in the world to date. The solar installation will supply enough electricity to handle 100% of the current demand, and enough capacity for future expansion. While touring the solar project sites, MAECI employees briefed the Ambassador Asquino on progress already made on the project as well as future plans.

 

About Ambassador Mark L. Asquino:

 

Mark L. Asquino was confirmed by the U.S. Senate as U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Equatorial Guinea on June 29, 2012.  Ambassador Asquino arrived in Equatorial Guinea in August 2012 and presented his credentials to President Teodoro Obiang Nguema in Malabo on October 4, 2012. Ambassador Asquino most recently served as the Executive Assistant in the Office of the Under Secretary for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights at the U.S. Department of State and was a career member of the Senior Foreign Service with the rank of Minister Counselor, From 2010 to 2011, he served as a Senior Public Diplomacy Fellow at George Washington University while he Previously he served as Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Sudan and at the U.S. Embassy in Kazakhstan.   Ambassador Asquino has also served overseas in Caracas, Panama City, Madrid, Bucharest, Santiago, and Tashkent.  In Washington, he has served as the Principal Deputy Coordinator for Reconstruction and Stabilization at the U.S. Department of State.  Ambassador Asquino received his A.B. and Ph.D. in American Civilization from Brown University.

Pennsylvania Company bringing electricity to African Island

Dr. Samuel Nana-Sinkam, has spent most of his career assisting developing countries in Africa and around the World. Now the President & CEO of the United States Corporation, MAECI, is helping to bring 24-hour electricity to Annobon Island, an Equatorial Guinea province.

Students from Annobon and Malabo meet on Annobon Island to begin their PV training made possible my MAECI SOLAR
Students from Annobon and Malabo meet on Annobon Island to begin their PV training made possible my MAECI SOLAR

“We are building one of the world’s largest off-the-grid solar systems and bringing one of the world’s smallest inhabited islands into the 21st Century, within the framework of an ambitious but sustainable Economic and Social Economic Development Program launched by the Equato-Guinean Authorities, called “Horizon 20/20″; which aims at making the Équatorial Guinea an emerging Country by the year 2020” said Dr. Nana-Sinkam.
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MAECI is an International Economic and Financial consulting firm, that has completed several projects in Equatorial Guinea, and Dr. Nana-Sinkam has personally had the privilege of advising the Government of Equatorial Guinea in the development of the country before and after their discovery of significant oil & gas reserves off the coast of the country. He has also implemented and managed projects in other African Countries, such as Cameroon, Gabon, central African Republic, Congo, Guinea Bissau, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Burundi, DRC, Mozambique, Madagascar, just to name a few. In addition to this Annobon Solar project, MAECI has completed projects within the Agriculture and livestock sectors as well as various manufacturing applications.
In 2009, MAECI installed solar systems in community centers in villages close to Mongomo in the eastern part of the country as a pilot program. The purpose of the pilot program was to bring an energy solution to an extremely remote part of Equatorial Guinea, to show the people how low cost and sustainable electricity could change their lives for the better. That pilot program is still functioning today.

annonon

Located more than 300 km west of the mainland, Annobon Island is the tip of an extinct volcano. It has a land mass comparable to Middletown, expect with about 5,000 people concentrated at the island’s northern tip.
Since 1996, when important oil reserves were discovered in Equatorial Guinea, the nation has become one of the largest oil producers in sub-Saharan Africa.
Companies like Exxon-Mobil and Hess extract the raw oil and the country receives royalties. Those royalties are now being put to use to improve the lives of Equatoguineans through a visionary $1 billion economic development plan called Horizon 2020. The solar grid project on Annobón is a part of that effort. In addition, the President of Equatorial Guinea, H.E. Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo has invested heavily back into the country with thousands of projects, such as road and building construction, agriculture, energy, healthcare and education. It could be noted that through the oil extraction in Equatorial Guinea, 17% of cooking gas in the USA comes from Equatorial Guinea and Exxon-Mobil and Hess activities in Equatorial Guinea generate more than 45,000 jobs in the USA (direct and indirect).

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Many of Annobón’s residents still gather their daily food and firewood from the bush, and the only source of electricity on the island comes from diesel-powered generators that run for about five hours per day. Because the island is so remote, it costs quite a bit to get the refined diesel fuel there to run the generators; that is why this project makes sense. Right now, it costs them 35 to 40 cents to produce a kilowatt-hour with diesel, but it’s only about 20 to 25 cents with solar and battery storage and with the improvement in technology, this cost of this sustainable and environmentally safe energy is coming down.
MAECI has partnered with United States companies such as GE Power & Water, Eaton, Princeton Power Systems and NESL U.S. and technical assistance is provided by Wise Power a Delaware Company. The project includes installing 20,000 solar panels (built especially by NESL for this Project) in four arrays, including one in the mouth of the inactive volcano, one near the island’s airport, one near its hotel and a fourth at the southern tip to support three villages on the other side of the Island.
The electricity produced by those panels eventually will be stored in six-megawatt batteries that are backed up by generators for emergencies and to handle peak loads.

annobon clearing

MAECI started effectively in February 2014 and expect completion by the end of the year.

MAECI is also is working to reduce demand on the island’s future micro-grid by replacing 10,000 light bulb with energy-efficient LED bulbs (with 15 years life expectancy) capable of putting out 180 lumens per watt. MAECI employees are going door-to-door changing light bulbs. Most of the island’s residents are using 100-watt bulbs, so the goal is to reduce the load by 90 percent before the micro-grid ever gets turned on.

Solar panels are specially manufactured for MAECI by NESL.  MAECI & their technology partners arehelping bring electricity to the Equatorial Guinea province.
Solar panels are specially manufactured for MAECI by NESL. MAECI & their technology partners are helping bring electricity to the Equatorial Guinea province.

The Ambassador of the United States of America in Equatorial Guinea, Mark L. Asquino just finish a visit on Annobon Island and saw first-hand how work on this important Project is progressing. His impression would appear in our next article.

From our correspondent in New York.