Obiang Lima assumes office as OPEC President


Having served and played a significant role in the oil and gas industry since 1997, Minister Obiang Lima’s appointment as President of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) for 2023 is a well-deserved crescendo to a remarkable career.

This comes after he officially assumed the presidency for the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF), an appointment which further undergirds Minister Lima’s stellar track record and lends credence to his exceptional contribution to the energy sector. From facilitating Equatorial Guinea’s move to join OPEC in 2017 to overseeing the Definitive Agreements in 2019 with key stakeholders in the oil and gas industry in a bid to monetise the Alen Unit, Minister Lima has been a linchpin in Equatorial Guinea’s aim of becoming instrumental in the energy space around the world.

OPEC’s importance and influence in engaging the right stakeholders and igniting key conversations around the implementation of the right policies cannot be overemphasied. Having been formed in Baghdad in 1960 by Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela, OPEC currently has 13 member-states which hold more than a total of 80 percent of the world’s proven oil reserves.  The shifting landscape in the energy industry and recent geopolitical concerns put the oil and gas industry in a state of extreme volatility, making it more difficult to determine clear strategies for growth, especially for the continent of Africa.

Minister Obiang Lima’s appointment will undoubtedly further the cause toward the accomplishment of OPEC’s primary objective of coordinating and unifying petroleum policies around member-countries in order to secure fair and stable prices for petroleum producers; an efficient, economic and regular supply of petroleum to consuming nations; and a fair return on capital to those investing in the industry. Even more importantly, Minister Lima’s appointment will help facilitate Equatorial Guinea’s quest for becoming a notable driving force in the oil industry, and will expedite Africa’s overall involvement in making crucial strides toward becoming a very important player in the global oil and gas playing field.

In a statement she made following the announcement of Minister Obiang Lima’s appointment, Ms. Emelia Akumah, founder and President of the Africa Energy Technology Centre (AETC), reiterated her allegiance to Minister Lima and offered a congratulatory statement saying: “The entire team at AETC is truly delighted to see the appointment of Minister Gabriel Mbaga Obiang Lima to the position of President of OPEC. We are confident Minister Lima will bring his exceptional industry knowledge and leadership to bear, and will contribute immensely toward ensuring that Africa is fully represented in the global energy sector”. She further stated that: “AETC is fully committed to playing its part by pooling resources, operationalising industry policies, and working with all stakeholders within the global oil sector to help place Africa at a strategically advantageous economic position”.

Minister Lima’s latest appointment as President of OPEC bodes well for the future of the entire oil and gas industry. His incisive leadership style and inimitable work ethics will help spur Africa and the world toward market stability and energy security. Minister Lima’s accomplishments and experience as Minister Delegate, Vice Minister, Secretary of State for Mines and Hydrocarbons, and Government Representative in the Equity of the State in the PSCs will prove very valuable during his tenure as President of OPEC.

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