Three decades of connections

This interview was originally published in the Africa Energy Series: Equatorial Guinea book
Carlos Esono Mikó Director General of GETESA
Guinea Ecuatorial de Telecomunicaciones S.A. (GETESA) is the public telecommunications company of Equatorial Guinea. It has been facilitating connectivity and communications since 1987, and today provides phone, Internet and mobile services. In the energy sector, GETESA supports businesses through its national network coverage and Internet provision.

GETESA aims to become a telecommunications leader. What steps have you taken towards being at the forefront of IT and telecoms in this region?

GETESA’s main objective is to be the best operator in Equatorial Guinea and become a Central African platform where engineers are trained, new business models are deployed and where start ups and initiatives are generated. We hope to manage the growth of companies from Equatorial Guinea and focus on the development of the Central African market.
GETESA is a leading operator in Equatorial Guinea. Because of its fast mobile network, GETESA is a leader in network coverage, customer service and technology. The main milestone we have had is the extension of 3G and 4G coverage to all cities in Equatorial Guinea and the increase in broadband coverage.

What technology investments are you making in 2018 and how might those impact the energy sector?

Our biggest impact plan for 2018 and 2019 is the deployment of 4G technology in the main cities as well as the introduction of fiber technology. This will provide better productivity for the oil and gas sector because remote online access and general communications will be greatly improved.

What role has GETESA played in the energy sector thus far?

As the largest operator in the country, our operations extend to all sectors, including the oil and gas sector. We offer integrated solutions to corporations for global communication for both mobile and fixed applications. These services are most effective within the energy sector.

How has the growth in activity in the oil and gas sector incentivized the growth of the telecoms industry?

Telecommunications play a significant role in the everyday functions of the oil and gas sector. Because of this, the sec- tor continues to require a high level of resilience and quality, which directly affects telecommunications investments and services, which ultimately brings benefits to all services.

What will improved telecommunications networks mean for the Equatoguinean economy as a whole?

Telecommunications today are a big part of any business model in multiple fields. As a communications, sales, production and procurement channel we know that a good telecommunications network means less cost, better services and more business for all business sectors.

Is GETESA planning to explore new business opportunities in Equatorial Guinea?

At the moment, all mobile companies are entering into other sectors, particularly mobile banking. At GETESA we are looking closely at multiple initiatives in Central Africa but we have not yet taken any action. For now, we are focused on providing state of the art telecommunications services to our customers.

What do you regard as Equatorial Guinea’s greatest achievements to date, and do you believe there are opportunities that have been underexplored thus far?

Equatorial Guinea has invested more in infrastructure than its neighboring countries. The availability of electricity, water, ports, highways and airports has put the country in a leading position. We believe the challenge is to leverage this investment towards the private sector.

What is GETESA’s message to investors looking to do business in Equatorial Guinea as it celebrates its 50th year of independence?

Equatorial Guinea is a country with a small population and market, but with excellent infrastructure, geographic location and access to a market of over 300 million people. We invite investors to look at Equatorial Guinea as a safe platform to enter the market in Central Africa.
This interview was originally published in the Africa Energy Series: Equatorial Guinea book

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