Friday, May 27, 2011

Equatorial Guinea Strengthens Bilateral Relations With United States

U.S. Breaks Ground on a New Embassy in Malabo

The United States government broke ground last week on a new embassy compound in Malabo, the capital of Equatorial Guinea. The new complex, located close to downtown Malabo in a neighborhood planned for other diplomatic missions and United Nations agencies, will make a strong contribution to the city’s increasingly modern urban landscape.

Equatorial Guinea’s Second Deputy Prime Minister in Charge of Political Affairs and Democracy, Demetrio El√≥ Ndong Nsefumu, presided over the groundbreaking ceremony on May 17 on behalf of President and African Union chairman Obiang Nguema Mbasogo.

“Equatorial Guinea has always considered the U.S. as an ally, for believing in the values of justice, freedom, democracy, unity and economic prosperity, the path that Equatorial Guinea is determined to follow,” said Deputy Prime Minister Ndong.

Mr. Ndong highlighted the cooperative relations between Equatorial Guinea and the United States, stating that American investment, especially in the oil and gas sectors, has significantly helped the government’s efforts to carry out major public works projects and develop social infrastructure that has improved the standard of living for Equatorial Guinea citizens.

The U.S. Ambassador to Equatorial Guinea, Alberto Fernandez, and U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Susan Page were also present at the ceremony. “Just like there is a place in Equatorial Guinea called ‘Campo Alba’ (Field of Dawn) so we hope that this new embassy will be the dawn of a deeper and stronger relationship, not just with the government, but with all the people of Equatorial Guinea,” said Ambassador Fernandez.

The new embassy complex, to be built by Caddell Construction Company of Montgomery, Alabama, will occupy a 12-acre site close to downtown Malabo. It will include housing for diplomats and staff and provide work space for approximately 67 embassy employees. The estimated cost of the new embassy, which is expected to be completed by 2013, is $53 million.