Natural resources and energy
Congo-Brazzaville has large assets of oil and
natural gas in particular. There are also other
minerals, including large deposits of high quality iron
ore. The potential assets of hydropower for electricity
generation are enormous.
The first oil source in the Congo-Brazzaville was
discovered in 1957, but only in the 1970s did oil begin
to be extracted on a larger scale. In the 1990s, the
country developed into one of the largest oil producers
in sub-Saharan Africa.
Major exports by Republic of the Congo with a full list of the top products exported by the country. Includes trade value in U.S. dollars and the percentage for each product category.
Most of the oil is pumped up to sea and at the end of
the first decade of the 2000s new oil wells were found
there. In 2010, oil production increased by 14 percent,
compared to the previous year.
Since 2012, production has decreased somewhat. And in
the coming years, it is expected to decline further,
because the oil in several old oil fields has started to
Abbreviationfinder: A popular acronym site in the world covering abbreviation for each country. For example, CG stands for Republic of the Congo.
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But new oil deposits have been discovered and the
known reserves have thus increased. At the current
recovery rate, the oil would last for more than 15
The oil industry is dominated by the French company
The center for the oil industry is the port city of
Pointe-Noire, where the country's only refinery is
located. Outside Pointe-Noire, natural gas is also
Natural gas, which is a by-product of oil extraction,
is used for electricity generation and as an energy
source for industries. Commercial gas production is
projected to grow and triple within ten years.
So far, the majority of electricity comes from
hydropower plants. Congo has large assets on hydropower
and the prospects of becoming more than self-sufficient
in electric power, but first more power plants must be
built. Expansion is underway, among other things, with
Chinese assistance and electricity imports have
decreased. Congo-Brazzaville now produces three-quarters
of the electricity used. The rest is imported from
A bottleneck is the distribution. Only about
one-third of households are connected to the country's
electricity grid. Diesel generators are common. The
poorest are able to meet their energy needs with
Until recently, the extensive mineral resources had
not been exploited to any significant extent. But in
2013, the extraction of high-grade iron ore began.
Exploration of additional deposits is ongoing.
In addition, a number of other minerals are mined in
smaller quantities, mainly lead, zinc, gold, diamonds
and copper. There are also deposits of phosphate,
bauxite and pot ash that have not yet begun to be
The air pollution in the major cities is severe. The
water around the cities is often polluted.
Environmentally hazardous waste from industries is
rarely handled in orderly forms.
FACTS - ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT
Energy use per person
583 kilos of oil equivalent (2014)
Electricity consumption per person
213 kWh, kWh (2014)
Carbon dioxide emissions in total
3 095 thousand tons (2014)
Carbon dioxide emissions per inhabitant
0.6 ton (2014)
The share of energy from renewable sources
62.4 percent (2015)
Parliamentary elections are accused of impartiality
Parliamentary elections are conducted in two rounds.
During the election campaign, the opposition and NGOs
claim that the regime is using its power over state
institutions and media to spread its propaganda. The
Election Commission is accused of not being neutral. The
PCT government party and its allies receive 108 of 136
seats. The largest opposition party Upads gets seven.
Many dead by gun explosion
At least 240 people are killed when a gunfire in the
capital, Brazzaville, explodes. About 2,500 are damaged.
At least 16,000 people become homeless. The Defense
Minister will later be blamed for the explosion. He and
several other soldiers are forced to retire and be