Equatorial Guinea

Equatorial Guinea

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The Republic of Equatorial Guinea is in Africa bordering Cameroon and Gabon with coastline on the Gulf of Guinea. The country also includes five small islands, Corisco, Bioko, Elobey Grade, Elobey Chico,and Annobón. The population is about 722,000 people. The government is a republic with a president who is chief of state and a prime minister as head of government. The president is essentially a dictator exerting almost total control and discouraging political opposition.

Large oil reserves were discovered in 1996 bringing a large increase in revenue, however, few people benefit from this wealth. This country ranks low on the UN human development index. Human rights organizations view Equatorial Guinea’s leaders as having one of the worst human rights records in Africa, and this country is said to be one of the most corrupt in the world.

At this time, the capital of Equatorial Guinea is Malabo, however, the government has announced plans for a new future capital, Oyala. This city is under construction, to be completed by 2020. A Portuguese architectural firm designed the city, and AICEP, a Portuguese business development company, is providing funding.

Tourism is not a sector of the economy that has been particularly encouraged by the government. As a tourist, officials will scrutinize you and your papers. Travellers may be interested in the Monte Alen National Park, the Mocal Valley, Arena Blanca, visit beaches, or climbing a volcano.

Currency XAF: Central African CFA franc
Language Portuguese, French, Spanish
Capital Malabo
Recent Alerts None
Latest Alert Not Available

Diseases To Be Aware Of

The diseases listed below are those which occur most often in Equatorial Guinea. Other, less frequently encountered diseases might be displayed within the Travel Alerts section if they have occurred recently.

Hepatitis A

There is a significant risk for hepatitis A virus exposure in Equatorial Guinea through contaminated food or water.

Hepatitis B

There is a significant risk for acquiring hepatitis B in Equatorial Guinea.

Typhoid Fever

Unvaccinated people can become infected through contaminated food and water in Equatorial Guinea, especially when visiting smaller cities, villages, or rural areas where food and water sources may be contaminated.

Yellow Fever

There is a risk for yellow fever transmission in this country. This country requires a yellow fever vaccination certificate for travellers over 6 months of age arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission.

Rabies

Rabies occurs in Equatorial Guinea. Travellers involved in outdoor activities (e.g., campers, hikers, bikers, adventure travellers, and cavers) may have direct contact with rabid dogs, bats, and other mammals. Those with occupational risks (such as veterinarians, wildlife professionals, researchers) and long-term travellers and expatriates are at higher risk.

Cholera

Cholera outbreaks occur in Equatorial Guinea. The risk to travellers is low unless living or working in poor sanitary conditions, drinking untreated water or eating poorly cooked or raw seafood in this country.

Dengue Fever

Outbreaks of dengue fever may occur.

Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis occurs in Equatorial Guinea. Travellers are at risk for tuberculosis if visiting sick friends or family, working in the health care field, or having close prolonged contact with the general population.

Schistosomiasis

This disease is present in Equatorial Guinea and is acquired through contact with fresh water, such as swimming, bathing, or rafting. Well-chlorinated swimming pools and contact with saltwater in oceans or seas will not put travellers at risk for schistosomiasis.

Malaria

All areas of Equatorial Guinea are at high risk for malaria.

Chikungunya Fever

Chikungunya fever has occurred in this country.

Sleeping Sickness (Type 1)

African trypanosomiasis (“sleeping sickness”) occurs in this country. Travellers to urban areas are not at risk.

Vaccinations to Consider

The following is a list of recommended vaccinations for travelling to Equatorial Guinea.

Hepatitis A Vaccine

There is a significant risk of exposure to hepatitis A for this country, therefore, the vaccination is recommended.

Hepatitis B Vaccine

There is a significant risk of infection with hepatitis B for this country, therefore, the vaccination is recommended.

Typhoid Fever Vaccine

There is a risk of exposure to typhoid fever in this country through consumption of unsafe food and water. Since exposure to unsafe sources is variable within this country, the vaccination against typhoid fever is generally recommended, especially when visiting smaller cities or rural areas, where food and water sources may be contaminated.

Yellow Fever Vaccine

A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required for travellers over 6 months of age arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission. Vaccination is recommended for all travellers 9 months of age and older.

Rabies Vaccine

Vaccination against rabies is recommended for travellers involved in outdoor activities (e.g., campers, hikers, bikers, adventure travellers, and cavers) who may have direct contact with rabid dogs, bats, and other mammals. Those with occupational risks (such as veterinarians, wildlife professionals, researchers) and long-term travellers and expatriates are at higher risk should be vaccinated.

Cholera Vaccine

The U.K. NaTHNaC recommends the oral cholera vaccine for some travellers whose activities or medical history put them at increased risk, travelling to areas of active cholera transmission. These risk factors include: aid workers; those going to areas of cholera outbreaks who have limited access to potable water and medical care; travellers for whom the vaccination would be considered potentially beneficial, such as chronic medical conditions. The U.S. CDC recommends the cholera vaccine for travellers who are 18-64 years of age and who plan to travel to areas of active cholera transmission. CDC notes that most travellers do not travel to areas of active cholera transmission, and that safe food and water practices can prevent many cholera infections.

Medications to Consider

The following is a list of recommended medications for travelling to Equatorial Guinea.

Anti-malarial Drugs

Recommended anti-malaria medications include atovaquone-proguanil, mefloquine or doxycycline. Resistance to chloroquine and sulfadoxime-pyrimethamine has been reported.

Safety and Security in Equatorial Guinea

Emergency Numbers

There is no national emergency telephone number in Equatorial Guinea. To reach local police in Malabo, call 113.

Personal Safety

Compared to other countries in Africa, the crime rate is relatively low in Equatorial Guinea. However, petty crime, such as pickpocketing, bag snatching, or other theft does occur. Always be alert to your personal safety. Keep valuables secured and out of sight. Safeguard your important documents, such as your passport. Avoid walking alone at night. Avoid walking around Malabo or Bata at night.

There have been some reports that police and other officials may be generally hostile to Westerners.

There have been reports of people being robbed when travelling by taxi in both Malabo and Bata.

Always carry a copy of your passport and necessary identification. If travelling outside Malabo or Bata, it is recommended that you have a letter from your organization officially stating the purpose of your travel to Equatorial Guinea.

If you travel outside the main cities, notify local authorities. You may need a travel permit and a photography permit.

Road travel in rural areas may be difficult. Roads may be in poor condition. Military and police roadblocks are common. Be ready to show all identification and documents.

Political Unrest

In any country, avoid public demonstrations or protests. Even peaceful demonstrations can escalate to violence.

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