Equatorial Guinea Minister for Mines and Hydrocarbons Gabriel M. Obiang Lima has announced that his country will not participate in this year’s edition of Africa Oil Week that is scheduled to be held in Dubai.
Mr Obiang Lima made the announcement on Tuesday June 15 in the capital Malabo in what is viewed as the beginning African protest against the decision to move the venue of the conference from South Africa to Dubai.
The decision to boycott the Dubai conference was immediately hailed as bold, and it is expected more Africa countries will follow suit.
The minister expressed disappointment that the organisers of the conference, the London-based Hyve group, had inexplicably moved the event away from Africa.
Obiang Lima further disclosed that he would write to all IOCs and service companies operating in Equatorial Guinea to encourage them to stay away from the Africa Oil Week in Dubai. He urged fellow ministers and other industry stakeholders in Africa not to participate in the Dubai initiative.
The minister reminded the meeting about the story of how President Obiang agreed to host the Africa Nation’s Football Cup with a two months’ notice when Morocco declined to do so as previously agreed due to fears of the Ebola crisis rather than let Qatar host the cup.
This is not the time to abandon Cape Town, South Africa and Africa, he said. In addition to this, the minister looks forward to seeing Gwede Mantashe, Minister of Mineral Resources in Cape Town to further promote the African energy agenda through development and deal-making participation.
According to HE Gabriel Obiang, Duncan Clarke’s vision and love for Africa and its oil industry should not be forgotten. He credits Duncan Clarke for helping so many countries showcase their resources and attract investments and urged the African Energy Chamber to continue that legacy as it more critical now than ever.
Minister Gabriel will engage in an aggressive investment drive over the next six months and will be in Cape Town, Houston, Doha, and other cities to promote investment opportunities in Equatorial Guinea. He pledged to work with other ministers from the CEMAC region and the African Energy Chamber on finding solutions concerning the Central Bank’s (BEAC) new currency regulations.
According to him, IOCs and Independents have to be welcomed in the region and we must create and enabling environment.
The African Energy Chamber hailed the minister for his strong support for South Africa and Africa.
“Many Africans got into oil and gas (business) because of Duncan Clarke. He opened doors for so many. That legacy must be respected and preserved,” observed President of the African Energy Chamber, CEMAC region Leoncio Amada Nze.
“When you’re dealing with an issue like this, you don’t need everyone. You just need to be effective and we thank Minister Gabriel Obiang for his effective advocacy for Africa in times of crisis.” Added Mr Amada Nze.
“Our work to support the African Oil and Gas sector, will lead to a lot of changes on how Africa is viewed and how we respect this continent and its people. We must be patient, whatever temporary inconvenience there may be, in the long run it will be better for everybody.” Concluded Mr Amada Nze.
- A Tell report