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UAL warns of increasing risks of doing business in Equatorial Guinea

Universal Africa Lines (UAL) issued an alert to the international business community concerning the escalating risk of doing business in Equatorial Guinea.

Recent actions by the Ministry of Transport, Post Office and New Information and Communication Technologies to seize and nationalize properties and businesses owned by private international companies directly contravene established contracts and legal frameworks,” the company said. “UAL advises all global entities operating in Equatorial Guinea to exercise extreme caution and re-evaluate their risk exposure. This situation poses significant threats to the stability and integrity of international business operations within the region.”

Equatorial Guinea has been taking steps to attract foreign investment into its oil and gas sector, but ExxonMobil has unveiled plans to exit the country during Q2 2024, and transfer its assets to the local government. The nationalization of assets is a pressing issue for Universal Africa Lines (UAL) whose vessels have regularly been calling at Equatorial Guinea’s ports in support of oil and gas operations. UAL said that the K5 oil centre, which is part of the UAL Alliance group, is part of the EG government’s efforts to nationalise private businesses.”The Ministry of Transport in EG is trying to nationalize it.” UAL was unsure of the complete implications of the current situation, but told Project Cargo Journal that “we cannot confirm if it is safe for UAL to send its vessels into EG ports”.

UAL operates a fleet of multipurpose tween-deck vessels with heavy lift capabilities and special gear for project cargoes.