Armada - Armed Forces of Equatorial Guinea
(Fuerzas Armadas de Guinea Ecuatorial)

Equatorial Guinea is using its substantial oil wealth to rejuvenate and expand its armed forces and has acquired a significant amount of new and second hand equipment over the last decade, particularly for the Navy. As piracy and robbery at sea is a significant threat in the Gulf of Guinea, the country is investing in the Navy to protect its oil installations.

The Navy of Equatorial Guinea, by the standards of the African countries, is quite a serious fleet. In Africaa, perhaps it would only tot he Navis of countries such as South Africa, Algeria, Egypt and Nigeria). And, most interestingly, the quantitative and qualitative growth is literally in the years since 2010. It must be said that the Navy of the Central African countries represented almost exclusively patrol ships and boats, although one of these ships has the designation "amphibious frigate", although, in fact, it is a landing ship [BDK]. The second is a typical patrol ship of the Exclusive Economic Zone, and the closest thing to a class "corvette" or "small frigate." And now more about the two largest ships of the Navy of Equatorial Guinea.

In 1988, the United States donated a 68-foot patrol boat to the Equatorial Guinean navy to patrol its exclusive economic zone. The U.S. patrol boat "Isla de Bioko" is no longer operational. US military-to-military engagement has been dormant since 1997 (the year of the last Joint Combined Exchange Training Exercise). In 2008, from an unknown source was obtained by 50-meter patrol vessel of special construction Estuario de Muni, and in March 2011, put into operation two 470-tonne 62-meter patrol boats Kie-Ntem and Litoral, built under contract in 2009 Israeli shipyard Israel Shipyard in Haifa and is a modified version of the Israeli patrol missile boats Saar 4 types. Earlier, in 2004-2005, the same Israel Shipyard built for Equatorial Guinea, two 58-ton high-speed patrol boats type Shaldag Mk II c names of Isla de Corisco and Isla de Annobon.

The Vietnamese gunboats project TT400TR lead boat was built in Vietnam as HQ-272. The project is also designed in Nikolaev under the code "Lan" and now all the same promoutiruetsya Fast Craft Naval Supplies (UK) Limited. It also reported that before the construction of boats HQ-272 for the Vietnamese Navy, at the same Vietnamese company Hong Ha in Haiphong were three boats on the same project, but with reduced armament (two 25-mm twin guns 2M-3M) for the Coast Guard Vietnam (NCIS). The project was implemented in Vietnam with the mediation of "Ukrinmash." Vietnamese boats are also equipped with a radar system "cascade" with the radar "Delta-M."

The patrol ship "Bata" is of the design patrol ship SV-01 (the OPV-88 project, code Kasatka - Orca or "Killer Whale" - not "Advertising"). The ship itself is named, respectively, after the main port and naval base of Bata on the mainland. The design was developed in Nikolaev Ukrainian specialists of state enterprise "Research and Design Center of Shipbuilding" under the auspices of the Ukrainian-British joint venture Fast Craft Naval Supplies (UK) Limited. In fact, as can be judged, this joint venture created "Ukrspetsexport", together with British and Turkish partners to promote products Ukrainian naval shipbuilding in third countries. The actual construction of the ship Bata was carried out by the Bulgarian Shipyard "Dolphin" in Varna, and the ship carried a fictitious name Kasatka nominally built for "Lithuanian company" as "search-and-rescue vessel". Kasatka was laid down June 17, 2010. Upon completion of sea trials the ship departed to Equatorial Guinea in mid-October 2011. Delivered with the Ukrainian weapons and equipment were installed on the Bata already in Malabo Ukrainian experts (including the company's "Pulse 2" from Sevastopol dedicated to the repair of marine weapons).

According to the company Fast Craft Naval Supplies (UK) Limited, a patrol ship project OPV-88 has a total displacement of 1360 tons, maximum length of 87.3 meters, a width of 11.8 meters and an average deepening 4.05 meters. Propulsion diesel twin-shaft speed range of up to 25 knots, cruising range of 3,500 miles at a speed of 12 knots, autonomy of 20 days. The crew of 35 people, there is space to accommodate another 20 people. The armament of Bata for the Navy of Equatorial Guinea consists of a 76-mm gun mount AK-176 and two 30-mm gun mounts AK-630 (all taken from decommissioned ships of the Navy of Ukraine), as well as two new feed remotely controlled weapon stations BM-5M.01 "Katran- M "with a 30-mm cannon ZTM1 (marine variant of the combat module Nicholas development" Storm "for armored vehicles).

Combat missile and artillery unit BM-5M.01 "Katran-M" Nicholas's design is a variant of the combat module BM-3 "Storm" for armored vehicles, and installed on warships discussed below Ukrainian Navy projects in Equatorial Guinea. Module uninhabited remotely controlled. Armament includes a 30-mm automatic cannon ZTM1 and coaxial 7.62-mm machine gun CT, as well as two to four ATGM "Barrier" with a laser guidance system. elevation angles of 30-mm cannon increased to 60 degrees and declination - to -16 degrees. In general, the typical antiboat device. 30 mm. obespechivaetdalnost instrument of destruction up to 2 km., ATRA allows striking surface targets up to 5 km. Machine gun allows for small size boats and pirate motorboat without spending quite expensive shells.

It must be said that the placement of the AK-176 and AK-630 in the bow of the ship hints that the problems of air defense solution is not a strong point of this project. But in a hangar at a helipad located slips with boats semi-rigid type, which are optimized for Inspection of operations and landing reconnaissance and sabotage groups. In terms of electronic equipment - the ship is equipped with a radar system "Cascade" with the SV-01 radar "Delta M" development of Kyiv Research Institute "Quantum-Radar". Aviation equipment a helicopter allegedly Ka-29 (supplied in Equatorial Guinea Ukraine). About the presence of any anti-submarine weapons there is no information.

In general, a very interesting ship. Judging by the composition of armament main task for him is patrolin exclusive economic zone and the fight against piracy (for which it is optimized). However, the design of patrol vessels tend to reserve the ability to install other weapons. As for the strengthening of defense, the other options would be (theoretically) to install MANPADS systems - for example, the French "Mistral-Sadral".

The Armed of Equatorial Guinea incorporated a new ship presented in the capital, Malabo, on 03 June 2017. The new F073 frigate "Wele Nzas" is named after one of the inland provinces. Its length is 107 meters and its displacement is approximately 2,500 tons. The ship has a beam of 14 meters and a draft of 3.7 meters. The production of the frigate was somewhat strange. The design is Ukrainian, designed by the State Research Center and Naval Design Nikolaev (Ukraine). The keel was laid in May 2012 in the shipyards MTG Dolphin Varna (Bulgaria), on the Black Sea. After being launched in February 2013, the ship was completed in the shipyard floating dock that has in Malabo Equatorial Guinea. The company was created in 2010 with Israeli assistance and its management have obtained Ukrainian possibly help. The main armament is composed of two individual mounts 76.2mm AK-176 to stern and bow, along with two point defense systems AK- 630M placed in each band. It also has two MS-227 "Ogon" 140mm rocket launchers. Apart from radar, electronic warfare equipment and flight deck for helicopters, missiles or torpedoes are not part of the armament of the ship. Thus, the right thing would name the ship "patrol boat".

IHS Janes reported that although the ship was modified locally, it was designed by the Ship Research and Design Center in Nikolaev, Ukraine and built by MTG Dolphin at a shipyard in the Bulgarian port of Varna as a ‘salvage and rescue vessel’. The keel was laid in May 2012 and it was launched in Varna in February 2013. It was later outfitted with combat systems at a naval shipyard widely believed to be the Astilleros de Guinea Ecuatorial (ASABA GE) in the capital Malabo. The Wele Nzas is powered by four Caterpillar C280 diesel engines and can cruise to a top speed of 25 knots with a full operational range of 5 000 nautical miles. The ship’s weapons include two MS 227 multi-barrelled rocket launchers, 76.2 mm AK-176 guns which are fitted on the fore and aft and two close-defence 30 mm AK-630M guns mounted besides the funnel stack. According to IHS Janes, the ship's sensor systems include a dome-enclosed radar set on the fore-mast, two navigational radars and a Delta-M radar on the funnel stack. It is also fitted with electro-optical devices which include two optical target designators, an electronic support measures (ESM) antenna and a Satellite Communication (SATCOM) antenna.

According to President Obiang the day of the commissioning of the ship, the navy of the country will incorporate more ships. There is no doubt that oil is allowing you to get decent weapons in quantity impossible for such a small country if it had the support gives oil and gas. clearly this following the path taken by Bahrain or Qatar, even smallconries are able to field some armed force disproportionate to their size and risks.

Another ship that deserves attention is the "amphibious frigate", but in fact a landing ship "David Eyama Angue Osa". In 1991, Lieutenant Colonel David Eyama Angüe Osa, military attaché to Nigeria was caught with the cargo of a plane of Brazil's Varig, with 30 kilos of cocaine hidden in batteries for cars. After that Nigerians requested the waiver of diplomatic immunity, the President Nguema sent his eldest son, Teodoro, to negotiate with the Nigerian head of state himself, who was then General Babangida, for the release of his protege. Drug Police of Nigeria (NDLEA) then protested by insinuating that the military attaché in fact worked for the president of Equatorial Guinea.

Information about the ship is scarce, it is known that it is a full displacement of 4,000 tons. The ship was supposedly built in Bulgaria for the Ukrainian project RO2 ( coded named Salamander - the name of the ship during construction) and joined the Navy of Equatorial Guinea in October 2009. According to some reports the ship is based on the Soviet BDK 1171 "Alligator", very highly revised, and seemingly shortened. If so, then the dimensions of the ship should be approximately length 113.1 meters, width 15.6 m, draft of 4.5 m, full speed of 16 knots, cruising range 2,400 nautical miles. Once again, that the original project is very much refined - in particular equipped with a stern helipad, and apparently a permanent hangar. Most likely, the ship was built in the same plant Bulgarian "Dolphin" and is also equipped with weapons since the Ukrainian is already using in Malabo. The ship was delivered to the customer in 2009.

The ship is distinguishable by the helicopter hangar and set behind the chimney one of the weapon stations "Katran-M". In terms of armament: the ship is equipped with a 76-mm gun mount AK-176, allegedly, two 30-mm gun mounts AK-630 (according to other sources the two 25-mm 2M AU-3.), Two 140-mm MLRS launchers BM- 14-17 (apparently, they are also removed from decommissioned ships of the Ukrainian Navy), as well as two combat modules BM-5M.01 "Katran-M" (first production). In addition there is a hangar for the helicopter-based class Ka-29. Equipping weapons systems was carried out at the customer Ukrainian specialists. The highlight of the project is the availability of an integrated small-ship self-defense systems (radar + ECO + mini + 2-3 CICS combat arms control module - all in the desktop version), established in Ukraine, and is available commercially under the name "Cascade", was first established in 2009 BDK "SALAMANDRA" (in fact, under this name, apparently, and performed African order).

In July 2010, after the visit of Brazilian president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, the sale of a Barroso-class corvette to be constructed in Brazil was announced. President Obiang met the Brazilian shipbuilding defense in February this year, on your trip to Rio de Janeiro. On this occasion, he was taken by EMGEPRON to know the corvette Barroso at the Navy Yard. Because of this presidential interest, and the strong prospect of closing a contract has been included in the programming of trip to Africa Barroso a stop in Malabo, coinciding with the passage of Lula the country. Lula came to Africa, accompanied by a delegation of entrepreneurs from various key sectors of the economy.

With waters representing ten times the land area, the fight against maritime insecurity in the Gulf of Guinea is a critical issue - the hijacking of a Spanish ship off the island of Bioko by Nigerian pirates in January 2014 is a recent testimony. President Obiang is the initiative of the policy of cooperation between the countries of the "Delta area" (Cameroon, Gabon, Sao Tome and Principe and Equatorial Guinea), which has led to joint patrols. The Equatorial Guinea is also funding a national school with a regional focus in the area of State action at sea. With the support of France, which provides leadership, the school opened in Bata in 2011. A Naval Academy is also under construction, to Tica, north of the mainland. President Obiang expressed his desire to be closer to his Nigerian counterpart to expand partnerships in the field of regional cooperation. Commercial surveys to equip the Equatorial Guinean naval forces have intensified.

Defence Ministries of Russia and Equatorial Guinea signed a memorandum envisioning joint naval exercises and collaboration in the field of naval shipbuilding, the Russia Defense Ministry’s spokesman for the Navy, Captain 1st Rank Igor Dygalo told reporters on 02 October 2015. "The memorandum reflects the willingness of the sides to broaden naval cooperation on the principles of equitability and partnership and it maps out the main guidelines for cooperation," he said. Capt. Dygalo said, in part, the document presupposes visits of naval ships and auxiliary seacraft to the two countries’ ports, joint exercises, joint efforts in search for distressed crews and salvage on high seas, development of naval education, promotion of humanitarian ties, and collaboration in naval shipbuilding and hydrography. The memorandum was signed in the course of a second session of the intergovernmental workgroup for cooperation in defense-related technologies. It carries the signatures of Admiral Viktor Chirkov, the Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Navy, and the Minister of National Security of Equatorial Guinea, Nicholas Obama Nchama.

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