Housing Finance in Equatorial Guinea


For the French version of this country profile, click here.

To download a pdf version of the full 2018 Equatorial Guinea country profile, click here.

The housing finance sector in Equatorial Guinea exists in a middle-income economy largely dependent on oil. Despite the levels of development which the country has experienced, the economy is vulnerable to the fluctuations of the hydrocarbon industry. Its GDP growth rate dropped to -10.60 percent in 2016 before recovering slightly to approximately -8 percent in 2017. Recent declines in global oil prices and the country’s own outputs has resulted in the decline of budgetary surpluses that financed investment programmes across the country. Non-oil economic activity is chiefly driven by substantial public investment in new infrastructure projects such as roads and high profile urban developments, specifically a housing policy for new homes and better access to service infrastructure.

Equatorial Guinea’s banking sector is highly concentrated and consists of five banks, three of which hold 84 percent of total assets. The country’s financial development gap is the highest among African oil-exporters and is largely characterized by limitations on borrowers’ credit history and high collateral requirements, high overhead costs and interest rate spreads, high risk and low competition due to a limited number of commercial banks.

Housing conditions in Equatorial Guinea, and especially in Malabo and Bata, remain precarious due to the rapid increase in the urban population and the lack of an urbanisation plan to control disorderly construction. As a result, most housing does not meet minimum standards: houses are derelict and unsafe, sewage and refuse removal are inadequate, and there is, among other problems, overcrowding and insufficient ventilation. The government has expressed its priorities as developing and implementing adequate regulations for the housing market; increasing and diversifying financial support for social housing construction projects; and the preparation and application of an urban policy and a national urbanisation plan. The development of affordable housing continues to be constrained by the lack of specialised financial institutions focused on housing and urban planning; inadequate coordination of initiatives in the construction of social housing, and the lack of investment by the private sector in the construction of rental housing.

A returning, well-trained diaspora that is willing to invest in the country is an added to the benefit to the country’s growth prospects and demand for affordable housing.The high cost of formal construction provides developers with an opportunity for innovation, whether through the local manufacture of building materials locally or through other initiatives. Equatorial Guinea presents opportunities for increased activity in the affordable housing market.

Find out more information on the housing finance sector in Equatorial Guinea, including key stakeholders,important policies and housing affordability:

Each year, CAHF publishes its Housing Finance in Africa Yearbook. The profile above is from the 2018 edition, which has up-to-date profiles for 54 African countries.

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