Safety and security
Compared with other countries in the region, the level of violent crime in Equatorial Guinea is low and there have been very few cases of British nationals needing consular assistance. However, there are an increasing number of robberies against people travelling by taxi in both Malabo and Bata including a serious incident of robbery and assault in a shared taxi in Bata. Avoid taking taxis with groups of strangers, particularly at night.
There are regular reports of petty theft affecting both visitors and expatriates. Take sensible personal security precautions. Don’t carry valuables or wear jewellery in public and avoid isolated or poorer areas of town. Don’t walk around Malabo and Bata at night and avoid travelling by road after dark.
If you do not have an Equatorial Guinean resident permit, please carry a copy of the photo page and visa page of your passport with you if you wish to travel outside Malabo on the island of Bioko, and outside Bata on the mainland.
Land borders can close with little or no notice. Check the situation with the local authorities before travelling to border areas.
Most major roads on Bioko Island and the Rio Muni mainland are now paved. In some isolated rural areas the condition of the roads is likely to be poor. Police and military roadblocks are common.
You may be asked to show your passport, or vehicle registration documents and explain your reason for being in the area. Failure to comply can lead to detention.
There are regular reports of extortion by police and uniformed security forces at roadblocks. You are advised not to pay bribes but to ask for a ticket, detailing alleged offences or violations, which can be paid at a local court.
Public transport facilities, particularly on the mainland, are extremely limited.
Equatorial Guinean-registered aircraft are banned from EU airspace on safety grounds. British government employees do not use these aircraft unless this is unavoidable.
There have been armed attacks on commercial shipping vessels in the Gulf of Guinea. Take extreme care when travelling in coastal waters.
The political situation has been calm in recent years but you should be aware that political events can lead to an increased presence of police, military or security forces on the streets. Avoid any political rallies, demonstrations or large public gatherings.
There have been occasions when expatriate staff of foreign companies have been confined to the country for prolonged periods when commercial disputes have arisen.