International Monetary Fund (IMF) Staff Concludes Visit to Equatorial Guinea

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Equatorial Guinea's economy expanded in 2022 for the first time since 2014, with real GDP growth estimated at 2.2 percent

D.C., United States of America, June 9, 2023/ — A team from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), led by Mesmin Koulet-Vickot, conducted a mission during May 29–June 7, 2023, to update macroeconomic projections based on recent developments and take stock of the authorities' policy vision and priorities.

At the end of the visit, Mr. Koulet-Vickot issued the following statement:

“Equatorial Guinea's economy expanded in 2022 for the first time since 2014, with real GDP growth estimated at 2.2 percent, reflecting higher global hydrocarbon prices and Bata reconstruction. Inflation reached 4.8 percent in 2022 on account of high food import prices. A significant part of the hydrocarbon revenue windfall was saved as reflected in the fiscal surplus of 10.1 percent of GDP, and a significant strengthening of the external current account. However, the non-oil primary fiscal deficit increased to 9.9 percent of GDP in 2022 from 8.7 percent of GDP in 2021. The banking sector prudential indicators weakened.

“For 2023, real economic activity is projected to decline by 6.4 percent, a more pronounced recession than initially envisaged, reflecting a more severe impact of the incident to the oil field. Inflation will moderate to 2.8 percent. The non-oil primary fiscal deficit is projected to be 11.5 percent of GDP.

“Over the medium term, Equatorial Guinea's economy is projected to continue to decline because of the shrinking role of the hydrocarbon sector. In that context, the authorities' vision to promote economic diversification is welcome. To achieve this, it is critical to improve the business climate, boost human capital and social spending while maintaining fiscal sustainability, and continue with governance reforms to increase transparency and fight corruption. Policy priorities include settling domestic arrears, addressing the longstanding banking sector vulnerabilities, increasing transparency in the extractive industry, including by pursuing EITI membership, and making further progress in operationalizing the anti-corruption legislation. It is also important to enhance mobilization of non-hydrocarbon revenue and shift public spending towards programs that support social inclusion. The Fund staff will continue to support the authorities in designing and implementing their reform agenda.

“The IMF team wishes to thank the authorities and various stakeholders for their hospitality and constructive discussions.”

During the visit, the IMF team met with his Excellency, President Teodoro ; First Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Education, University Teaching and Sports Clemente Engonga Nguema Onguene; Minister of Planning and Economic Diversification ; Minister of Finance and Budget Nchama; Minister of Health and Social Welfare Dámaso Mitoha Ondo Ayecaba; Minister of Culture, Tourism and Craft Promotion Prudencio Botey Sobole, Minister of Labor, Employment Promotion and Social Security Alfredo Mitogo Mitogo Adá, Vice-Minister of Finance and Budget, Pedro Abeso Obiang Eyang; Delegate Minister of the State Treasury and Patrimony Milagrosa Obono Angüe; National Director Genoveva Andeme Obiang, State Secretary of Ministry of Finance and Budget Maria Ebiaka Mohete, and other senior government officials.

SOURCE : International Monetary Fund (IMF)

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