Mechanisms of joint oil management between the DRC and Angola




Forty years after independence and despite its wealth, Central Africa continues to sink into chaos. Under the umbrella of a military-business dictatorship, oil is managed in the context of patronage, nepotism and corruption. The competition for the conquest of oil reserves stirs up envy among Western multinationals.

The contradictory assertion of neoliberalism combines with the offensive of the dominant countries1. In the context of the new world order; the United States is the only power to present a military strategy to impose its hegemony on the whole world. Militarization and sharp contradictions within and between powers produce and reproduce violence and war create the risk of generalized military conflicts to conquer raw materials.

The exploitation of petroleum resources in Africa continues to be the subject of conferences, seminars and publications. This geostrategic resource, which accounts for 80 to 90% of exports from producing countries in Central Africa (CEMAC), is far from meeting all expectations. Oil not only has a dominant place in the energy economy, but plays an essential role in economic growth, in national defense and in everyday life.

As a result, oil has become an important issue in many African states, particularly the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Republic of Angola. Since the end of the civil war in Angola, this one is considered as the African Dubai, every day this one has new oil reserves and this is as much

1 Didier Pidika M, Gerard Tchouassi, Regarding Central Africa, Crises
economic and coping mechanisms. Ed. Dalloz, Paris, p70.

for the DRC, the latter has also restructured a Ministry of Hydrocarbons.

The two states have one thing in common that of common border areas, the questions we are asking ourselves are:

  • after the wars, what is the oil situation for the development of two states?
  • what are the common management mechanisms taken so that oil between the two States is not a source of dispute?
  • are these mechanisms fully implemented?

1.2. Hypothesis of Work

By definition, according to R. Rezosohazy, the Hypothesis seeks to establish a provisional vision of the problem raised by evoking the supposed relation between the social facts whose relation constitutes the problem and by indicating the nature of this relation.2

Indeed, on the basis of this definition, the hypothesis is a series of responses that predict the scientific truth, which can be confirmed or invalidated after processing the data.

The DRC has a big problem linked to the exploitation and the production of oil does not have the appropriate means and this slows down the direct consumption of its 4 billion barrels of oil.

2 Rezosohazy R. Theory and critique of social facts, the renaissance of the book, Brussels, 1971, p.69

reserves at the level of its population as well as the export of its

This is why, to secure its reserves, the DRC wants to join OPEC like Angola, since integration allows member states to avoid conflicts to strengthen the common interest, despite the various low blows between the two states.

He thinks he will achieve this goal as quickly as possible, ignoring the demarcation of borders.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo must readjust its formulation on the exploitation of oil, in particular by respecting the principles of good neighborliness since conflicts between neighbors would handicap the profits linked to the exploitation of oil.

1.3. Method and technique

The best method is the one that will give the subject a better understanding of the object of study. In our work, to better understand the subject, we will use two methods:

The historical and functionalist method. The historical method, “is that which forces itself to construct the events in its origin up to the generating facts, to the initial real facts, it gathers, orders and hierarchizes around a singular phenomenon, a reality of the facts which exerted the most influence on
phenomena. 3

This method prompted us to interrogate the past and travel through time in order to identify the origin, and the circumstances and development of oil in general. And the evolution of its exploitation in the Democratic Republic of Congo since their agreements related to the hydrocarbon in order to understand the current situation, to analyze and formulate the hypotheses for the years to come.

While the functionalist method by definition, “is an analysis aimed at the exploitation of social facts at all levels of development by their function, and the role they play in the total system. 4

From the foregoing, techniques are tools, instruments, at the service of methods allowing researchers to come into contact with the object of study through data collection and processing, were also essential to us.

Thus, we made use of documentary techniques and more precisely, we used documents written through various scientific books, articles, reviews, journals, website and Memory works that we had to consult.

1.4. Subject delimitation

Our subject of study is so vast that it will take enough time, so as not to experience an escape of spirits, we will delimit our subject in a restricted context, “which should not be interpreted as an attitude of weakness or

4 SHOMBA K, Op. Cit p.83

flight of responsibility but, on the contrary, as a constraint on scientific progress.

In this scientific framework, it is desirable that a study be limited in time and space.

First in time, we are going to start from the 1970s with the framework agreement signed between Kinshasa and Luanda on various fields, notably on oil and on borders.

Then in space, since this happens between the DRC
and Angola.

1.5. Subject interest

The interest of the subject must be scientific, that is to say in relation to the science and the evolution of humanity, the oil of the DRC has known several congresses among which national experts, African, French, American , Brazilians,… in order to validate the hydrocarbons code on oil production in the days to come.

In recent decades, as the world evolves with the desire to assert the hegemony of several players on the economic level, good oil management has enabled these States to revive their economies. The study of crude oil allows companies, international firms to tackle the matter and this study must be done by very sophisticated machines and
scientifically very approved laboratories.

5 Same

1.6. The encountered difficulties

All work of a good intellect includes difficulties related to

Our work has put us in various incomprehensible scenarios, in particular to collect geostrategic and geopolitical and geopolitical data of the flagship states. This material is very delicate and includes less data.

The causes of the conflict do not say so loudly. But all this did not prevent us from clearly identifying the various problems linked to Congolese and Congolese oil and from analyzing it intelligently to find possible solutions.

1.7. Summary Plan

Apart from the introduction and the conclusion, our work is
subdivided into three chapters.

The introduction gives a detailed overview of the subject that will be our study, while the different chapters put us directly to the heart of the matter and these different chapters are broken down into sections and paragraphs to allow a better arrangement of the ideas of our text.

The first chapter will talk about generalities with as sections the presentation of the actors and the international questions of oil.

The second chapter will talk about Congolese-Angolan oil with the oil areas and oil activities as sections.

The third chapter will talk about the DRC and oil co-management with Angola. The place of oil in the world and in the DRC in particular.


The history of Angola begins notably with the Khoisan-speaking peoples before continuing with the emigration and colonization of the future Angolan territory by the Bantu-speaking peoples in the first centuries of the Christian era.

A former Portuguese colony, it is the second Portuguese-speaking country by size and the third by its population. The Angolan state was born in 1975. The current borders result from European colonization but African nationalities still take precedence over national feeling6.

Angola’s ethnic groups

The first inhabitants of Angola are Khoisans, living by hunting and gathering, knowing neither metal nor agriculture. Their company was

l. Historical
Republic of Angola,

Area: 1,246,700 km2.

Its population is estimated at 13,200,000. A Portuguese colony until 1975, then an independent state, Angola has survived the century without breaking up a political space, only the armed force deciding the exercise of power. First attempts


of emancipation, the Angolan National Party and the Angolan League were dissolved in 1926, following the putsch establishing the Salazarist dictatorship in Portugal14. MPLA, FNLA, UNITA. It was not until the second half of the 1950s that independent groups formed.

In Angola, intellectuals influenced by communism founded the Popular Movement of Angola (MPLA), chaired by Mario de ANDRADE and, from 1962, by Agostino Neto (1922-1979), son of a Methodist pastor, doctor of training. In 1957 was created in exile, in the Belgian Congo, by Holden Roberto, the precursor of the National Front for the Liberation of Angola (FNLA) 16. The nationalists launched, in February 1961 in Luanda then in March of the same year in the North-West, the anti-colonial insurrection, resulting in 1966 from a split of the FNLA, the national union for the total independence of Angola UNITA by Jonas Savimbi, son of a station master, originally from the central plateau, established his own maquis in the south-east of the country. First each working on their own account against the colonial power, then finding themselves in a rivalry in the times surrounding independence.

On April 25, 1974, the Carnation Revolution paved the way for independence. Signed in January 1975, the Alvor Agreements enshrine the modalities of a transition implemented in Lisbon by General Antonio de Spinoza and in Luanda by Red Admiral Rosa Coutinho. However, failing to come to an understanding within an interim government, the liberation movements fought each other, the FNLA marching on Luanda, the MPLA bastion, while UNITA seized the Benguela railway and the port of Lobito. , with the help of the South African army. The enclave of
Cabinda, very rich in oil, Portuguese protectorate since 1885 and

14 The dictionary, History and geopolitics of the 20th century. Ed., The discovery, Nov. 2000, Paris, p37
15 Same
16 ibidem

attached to Angola, sees its secessionist temptations maintained
by neighboring countries.

Civil and International War. On November 11, 1975, the MPLA proclaimed independence but could not defend the regime it set up with the help of Cuban soldiers, at the cost of the exodus of Portuguese settlers.

The military intervention of the Communist bloc took advantage of the paralysis of the United States, born of their recent defeat in the Vietnam War and the Watergate scandal followed by the resignation of President Richard Nixon in 1974. But South Africa by repeated incursions and, from 1985, the United States by a financial aid will support the UNITA to make room for the MPLA which controls the oil rent which became significant in the years 1970. The FNLA having lost its influence. Admitted in November 1976 to the UN.

In March 1977, then in May 1978, the country came close to war with neighboring Zaire (Congo-Kinshasa), which allowed the armed return of the former Katangese gendarmes to the southern province of the former Belgian Congo. The French and Moroccan paratroopers having saved the Mobutu regime by jumping on Kolwezi, Luanda is reconciled first with Portugal, then with Zaire, and finally with France.

In September 1979, President A. Neto died of cancer in a Moscow hospital. A 37-year-old oil engineer trained in the USSR, José Eduardo Santos, succeeded him.

Attempts at peace: In the 1990s, under the aegis of the UN, two attempts to end the interminable civil war in Angola failed, militarily in a position of strength, UNITA, after signing in May 1991 the Bicesse agreements which provide for the holding of elections in September 1992. After several attempts at negotiation, and the organization of the first free and transparent elections which saw the victory of Dos Santos, a certain lull will reign in the country. But only death of Jonas SAVIMBI will bring a final peace to the country.

Economy of Angola

Angola is a country ruined by communism and civil war. Angola first provided labor for the Brazilian economy (1532–1850) 17.

From 1875 the country will constitute the financial capital of Portugal and the population will be its workforce to produce raw materials for the industries of the metropolis. After independence, the country turned to communism, but the civil war largely ruined the economy. Only oil and diamond extractions have continued to flourish. After four decades of wars that reduced the country to a state of chaos, growth started with a bang from the year 2002, and forecasts

Growth is high. That of GDP rose to 26% in 2006 [1]. It is driven by oil and diamonds. Yet the oil windfall has not succeeded in pulling the whole country out of its underdeveloped state. In 2008, indicators show that Angola has one of the lowest life expectancies on the continent, a very insufficient education system and that the divide between rich and poor is only widening [2].

Angola also has deposits of gold, iron, phosphates, feldspar, bauxite and uranium. It has vast forests, fishing factories and arable land, where cotton, coffee and sisal are grown. With the approach of the legislative elections of September 2008, the government multiplied the announcements of major projects: water supply works, new fishing fleet, but opinions are divided on the future of these ambitious programs [2].

The density of the Angolan transport network is very low. There are only 2,761 kilometers of railways and 51,429 kilometers of roads. The development of oil exploitation led to efforts to build pipelines, the total length of which was 893 kilometers in 2004. The pipelines, on the other hand, had a total length of 214 kilometers. Finally, the country had 243 airports in 2004 (one for 5,130 square kilometers) but only 32 of which were equipped with a paved runway (one for 38,959 square kilometers). Four important ports are located on Angolan territory: Luanda, Soyo, Lobito and Cabinda (which constitutes an Angolan enclave between the two Congos, Republic of Congo and Democratic Republic of Congo). The Kapanda dam is expected to supply the majority of the country’s electricity.

In 2004, the Chinese Eximbank approved a US $ 2 billion line of credit for Angola. The loan is used to rebuild various infrastructure in the country. This loan also limited the influence of the International Monetary Fund in the country.

Oil, an Angolan economic value

Thanks to significant growth in oil extraction, and to civil peace finally found since 2002, the Angolan economy has become one of the most dynamic in Africa. Formerly exploited by French and American companies, the oil fields are now mainly managed by Chinese companies19.

The country’s growth is almost entirely driven by the growing oil production which exceeded 1.4 million daily barrels at the end of 2005 (70 million tonnes per year), and which is expected to be 2 million barrels in 2007 (100 million tonnes per year). Control of the oil industry is exercised by Sonangol, a conglomerate owned by the Angolan government. The economy grew by 18% in 2005 and is expected to grow by 26% in 200620.

On January 1, 2007, Angola entered as a full member of OPEC. For 2011, Angola plans to produce 2.5 million barrels per day or 125 million tonnes per year, which will place the country among the heavyweights of

This excerpt is a translation into English, the original of which is in French via this address:

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