In Pursuit of a Competitive Angolan Economy

During his previous tenure, SE President Lourenço saw a number of important policies, developments and reforms that not only resulted in an effective economic recovery from COVID-19, but transformed the country into the continent’s largest oil producer. First, HE President Lourenço launched an immediate crackdown on corruption as part of ongoing efforts to increase transparency both in government and in all sectors of Angola’s economy.

Alongside the zero-tolerance policy on corruption, a crucial decision was made to comprehensively restructure Angola’s oil and gas industry, leading to the creation of the National Agency for Petroleum, Gas and Biofuels (ANPG), which has the role of regulator and concessionaire. The formation of ANPG thus enabled national oil company Sonangol to better focus on the company’s core business of exploration and production and ushered in a new era of enhanced transparency and accountability in the industry.

Greater transparency naturally creates more confidence for international investors, who are flocking to Angola in ever greater numbers, getting involved not only in exploration and development of the country’s vast energy resources, but also in other sectors that are showing increasing dynamism, including telecommunications; financial services; Agriculture; Fishing; Mining; infrastructure and public works; power generation; Transport & Logistics; and tourism.

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Such reforms continue to play an important role in making the Angolan economy and overall investment climate increasingly competitive, and this now, right at the start of SE President Lourenço’s second five-year term and at a time when oil prices are hovering above the $100 mark per barrel, Angola is particularly well-positioned to reap the rewards of higher GDP growth and an influx of new foreign direct investment, while embarking on a slew of major infrastructure projects.

During his inaugural address in Luanda last week, SE President Lourenço stressed that he will take care of a number of public works and infrastructure and refinery projects currently underway, all of which will be ramped up and completed during his second term. These include the construction of the deep water port in Cabinda; the new Antonio Agostinho Neto International Airport in Luanda; as well as the numerous refineries being built in the cities of Soyo, Cabinda, Lobito and the recent modernizations of the existing Luanda Refinery. Various renewable projects are also in the pipeline, such as the Caculo Cabaça Dam and several new solar projects to be built as Angola continues to diversify its energy mix.

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“We will continue to work on policies and best practices to incentivize and encourage private sector development of the economy, increase the supply of goods and services, boost domestic manufacturing, expand exports and create a growing number of jobs for Angola’s citizens, especially our youth,” said SE President Lourenço in his inaugural address.

Therefore, the forthcoming 2022-2027 mandate will further emphasize inclusivity, as the new government will prioritize all the work necessary to achieve the ambitious socio-economic development goals set by HE President Lourenço. When talking about Angola it’s easy to immediately draw your attention to the country’s vast onshore and offshore oil and gas reserves or the lucrative diamond industry, but what was made clear in SE President Lourenço’s inaugural address is that The Angola’s most valuable resource is the Angolan population of over 34,795,287 million people: Angola’s human capital. Therefore, the new government is prioritizing the development of Angola’s people by increasing access to opportunities in all areas of Angola’s economy.

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Meanwhile, in 2022-2027, infrastructure development and large-scale public works will remain a cornerstone of the new government’s strategy to improve the daily lives of Angola’s citizens. These are being carried out as part of the integrated municipal intervention plan and SE President Lourenço stressed during his inaugural address that all these projects have the ultimate goal of ensuring greater economic development for the citizens of Angola and the creation of new employment opportunities.

As the country ushers in a new era of economic growth based on energy, political will and unleashed human capital development, opportunities in Angola’s economic landscape are expected to expand even further.

All this and more will be discussed during the third edition of Angola Oil & Gas 2022.

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