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Vol 39 No 10

Published 15th May 1998


Oil-rich, and poor

Luanda's fabulous petroleum prospects are doing little to help the devastated economy

Angola is Africa's hottest oil territory. International oil companies line up for exploration and exploitation rights; within a decade, production may match Nigeria's staggering two million barrels a day (b/d). Yet Angola's broke. Instead of making long-term deals in expectation of future revenue, it has to take cash up-front and borrow at stiff interest rates against hoped for future income. Mortgaging its oil before it's pumped leaves government no richer.

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